What is another word for subtle?

Synonyms for subtle
ˈsʌt lsub·tle

This thesaurus page is about all possible synonyms, equivalent, same meaning and similar words for the term subtle.


  1. subtleadjective

    Hard to grasp; not obvious or easily understood; barely noticeable.

    The difference is subtle, but you can hear it if you listen carefully.


  2. subtleadjective

    Cunning, skillful.

    cunning, crafty, skillful

  3. subtleadjective



English Synonyms and Antonyms

  1. subtle

    Acute, from the Latin, suggests the sharpness of the needle's point; keen, from the Saxon, the sharpness of the cutting edge. Astute, from the Latin, with the original sense of cunning has come to have a meaning that combines the sense of acute or keen with that of sagacious. The astute mind adds to acuteness and keenness an element of cunning or finesse. The astute debater leads his opponents into a snare by getting them to make admissions, or urge arguments, of which he sees a result that they do not perceive. The acute, keen intellect may take no special advantage of these qualities; the astute mind has always a point to make for itself, and seldom fails to make it. A knowing look, air, etc., in general indicates practical knowledge with a touch of shrewdness, and perhaps of cunning; in regard to some special matter, it indicates the possession of reserved knowledge which the person could impart if he chose. Knowing has often a slightly invidious sense. We speak of a knowing rascal, meaning cunning or shrewd within a narrow range, but of a knowing horse or dog, in the sense of sagacious, implying that he knows more than could be expected of such an animal. A knowing child has more knowledge than would be looked for at his years, perhaps more than is quite desirable, while to speak of a child as intelligent is altogether complimentary.

    acute, astute, clear-sighted, crafty, cunning, discerning, discriminating, keen, knowing, penetrating, penetrative, perspicacious, sagacious, sharp, shrewd, subtile

    blind, dull, idiotic, imbecile, shallow, short-sighted, stolid, stupid, undiscerning, unintelligent

Complete Dictionary of Synonyms and Antonyms

  1. subtle

    sly, artful, cunning, insinuating, wily, astute, nice, discriminating, crafty, fine, shrewd, sophistical, jesuitical

    open, frank, honest, artless, undiscriminating, rough, blunt, undiscerning, unsophisticated, simple

Princeton's WordNet

  1. elusive, subtleadjective

    difficult to detect or grasp by the mind or analyze

    "his whole attitude had undergone a subtle change"; "a subtle difference"; "that elusive thing the soul"

    pernicious, baffling, problematic, knotty, tough, insidious, elusive, problematical

    tangible, unperceptive, harmless, palpable, unperceiving

  2. subtleadjective

    able to make fine distinctions

    "a subtle mind"

    insidious, elusive, pernicious

    tangible, harmless, palpable, unperceptive, unperceiving

  3. insidious, pernicious, subtleadjective

    working or spreading in a hidden and usually injurious way

    "glaucoma is an insidious disease"; "a subtle poison"

    pestilent, elusive, baneful, pernicious, insidious, deadly

    unperceiving, tangible, unperceptive, harmless, palpable

Dictionary of English Synonymes

  1. subtleadjective

    crafty, cunning, artful, sly, wily, arch, astute, designing, intriguing, insinuating, crooked, tricky, diplomatic, machiavelian

  2. subtleadjective

    acute, keen, shrewd, sagacious, deep, profound

Synonyms, Antonyms & Associated Words

  1. subtleadjective

    artful, cunning, sly, designing, crafty, refined, discriminating

PPDB, the paraphrase database

  1. List of paraphrases for "subtle":

    delicate, sophisticated, discreet, nuanced, cunning, perceptive

How to pronounce subtle?

How to say subtle in sign language?

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How to use subtle in a sentence?

  1. Hermes Gadelha:

    It could be that the rolling motion hides some subtle aspects about the health of this sperm or how well it can travel quickly, these are all very hypothetical questions. What we hope is that more scientist and fertility experts will become interested and ask,' OK, how does this influence infertility ?'.

  2. Patrick Ta:

    When you’re choosing to do a pink shadow, you should choose a vibrant pink that actually shows, when you choose something too subtle, it can make your eyes look a little sick.

  3. Ophir Klein:

    There may be subtle differences( between animals and humans) that we don't know about.

  4. Michelle Carstensen:

    But this new paper says, ‘Not so fast – these subtle changes during summers can be exacerbating some of these effects and you need to pay attention to that as well,’.

  5. Nicholas Colas:

    It's certainly a concern for financial firms...since it increases the cost of trading, i see it as a not-so-subtle attempt to show that Bloomberg the candidate is not afraid to hurt the clients of Bloomberg the business in order to appeal to Democratic voters.

Translations for subtle

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"subtle." Synonyms.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 27 Sep. 2022. <https://www.synonyms.com/synonym/subtle>.

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