SEVERE: Synonyms and Related Words. What is Another Word for SEVERE?

Need another word that means the same as “severe”? Find 126 synonyms and 30 related words for “severe” in this overview.

The synonyms of “Severe” are: spartan, austere, stark, stern, terrible, wicked, hard, knockout, dangerous, grave, grievous, life-threatening, serious, acute, very bad, critical, dire, drastic, extreme, dreadful, awful, frightful, appalling, sore, fierce, violent, strong, wild, powerful, forceful, intense, excruciating, agonizing, unbearable, intolerable, unendurable, very difficult, demanding, tough, arduous, formidable, taxing, exacting, rigorous, punishing, onerous, gruelling, burdensome, heavy, harsh, bitter, cold, bleak, freezing, icy, arctic, polar, siberian, nasty, scathing, sharp, ferocious, stringent, savage, blistering, searing, stinging, scorching, devastating, mordant, trenchant, caustic, biting, cutting, withering, unsparing, extortionate, excessive, unreasonable, inordinate, outrageous, stiff, strict, inflexible, uncompromising, inexorable, implacable, rigid, unbending, relentless, unrelenting, unyielding, merciless, pitiless, ruthless, draconian, oppressive, repressive, punitive, rough, dour, grim, forbidding, disapproving, unsmiling, unfriendly, sombre, sober, flinty, stony, steely, glowering, frowning, plain, simple, restrained, unadorned, undecorated, unembellished, unornamented, chaste, spare, unfussy, ascetic, monastic, puritanical

Severe as an Adjective

Definitions of "Severe" as an adjective

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, “severe” as an adjective can have the following definitions:

  • Causing fear or anxiety by threatening great harm.
  • Unsparing and uncompromising in discipline or judgment.
  • Unsparing and uncompromising in discipline or judgment- H.G.Wells.
  • (of a person) formal and unsmiling.
  • Very strong or vigorous.
  • Demanding great ability, skill, or resilience.
  • (of something bad or undesirable) very great; intense.
  • Intensely or extremely bad or unpleasant in degree or quality.
  • (of punishment of a person) strict or harsh.
  • Severely simple.
  • Very bad in degree or extent.
  • Very plain in style or appearance.

Synonyms of "Severe" as an adjective (126 Words)

acuteDenoting or designed for patients with an acute form of a disease.
An acute or critical lack of research funds.
agonizingExtremely painful.
There is an agonizing choice to make.
appallingCausing shock or dismay; horrific.
Appalling conditions.
arcticExtremely cold.
An arctic climate.
arduousTaxing to the utmost; testing powers of endurance- F.D.Roosevelt.
The arduous work of preparing a dictionary.
asceticPertaining to or characteristic of an ascetic or the practice of rigorous self discipline.
Ascetic practices.
austereOf a stern or strict bearing or demeanor; forbidding in aspect.
An austere expression.
awfulExtreme in degree or extent or amount or impact.
You look awful you should go and lie down.
biting(of insects and certain other animals) able to wound the skin with a sting or fangs.
His biting satire on corruption and power.
bitterPainful or unpleasant to accept or contemplate.
A bitter five year legal battle.
bleak(of the weather) cold and miserable.
He paints a bleak picture of a company that has lost its way.
blisteringHarsh or corrosive in tone.
The blistering heat of the desert.
burdensomeNot easily borne; wearing.
The burdensome task of preparing the income tax return.
causticHarsh or corrosive in tone.
The players were making caustic comments about the refereeing.
chastePure and simple in design or style.
A chaste consoling embrace.
coldOf a person feeling uncomfortably cold.
A cold impersonal manner.
critical(of a text) incorporating a detailed and scholarly analysis and commentary.
A critical element of the plan.
cuttingCapable of cutting something.
A cutting remark.
dangerousAble or likely to cause harm or injury.
A dangerous criminal.
demandingRequiring more than usually expected or thought due; especially great patience and effort and skill.
A baby can be so demanding.
devastatingPhysically or spiritually devastating often used in combination.
The news came as a devastating blow.
direCausing fear or dread or terror.
Misuse of drugs can have dire consequences.
disapprovingExpressing an unfavourable opinion.
He shot a disapproving glance at her.
dourHarshly uninviting or formidable in manner or appearance.
A dour self sacrificing life.
draconian(of laws or their application) excessively harsh and severe.
The Nazis destroyed the independence of the press by a series of draconian laws.
drasticLikely to have a strong or far-reaching effect; radical and extreme.
A drastic reduction of staffing levels.
dreadfulCausing fear or dread or terror.
A dreadful storm.
exactingMaking great demands on one’s skill, attention, or other resources.
An exacting instructor.
excessiveBeyond normal limits.
He was drinking excessive amounts of brandy.
excruciatingVery embarrassing, awkward, or tedious.
He explained the procedure in excruciating detail.
extortionateUsing or given to extortion.
2 700 for that guitar is extortionate.
extremeOf the greatest possible degree or extent or intensity.
The extreme north west of Scotland.
ferociousMarked by extreme and violent energy.
A ferocious battle.
fierceFashionable or attractive in a bold or striking way.
Fierce storms lashed the country.
flinty(of a person or their expression) very hard and unyielding.
His flinty gaze.
forbiddingUnfriendly or threatening in appearance.
Forbidding thunderclouds.
forcefulForceful and definite in expression or action.
A forceful speaker.
formidableInspiring fear or respect through being impressively large, powerful, intense, or capable.
The challenge was formidable.
freezing(used hyperbolically) very cold.
He was freezing and miserable.
frightfulVery unpleasant, serious, or shocking.
A frightful mistake.
frowningForming an expression of disapproval, displeasure, or concentration by furrowing one’s brows.
The young writer pitched his screenplay to a frowning producer.
gloweringShowing a brooding ill humor.
graveCausing fear or anxiety by threatening great harm.
A grave God fearing man.
grievousCausing fear or anxiety by threatening great harm.
A grievous cry.
grim(especially of a place) unattractive or forbidding.
Grim laughter.
gruellingCharacterized by effort to the point of exhaustion; especially physical effort.
A gruelling schedule.
hardUnfortunate or hard to bear.
The hard light of morning.
harshUnpleasantly stern.
The harsh white light makes you screw up your eyes.
heavyLarge and powerful especially designed for heavy loads or rough work.
A heavy heart.
icyDevoid of warmth and cordiality; expressive of unfriendliness or disdain.
Her voice was icy.
implacableIncapable of being placated.
He was an implacable enemy of Ted s.
inexorableImpossible to stop or prevent.
The doctors were inexorable and there was nothing to be done.
inflexibleResistant to being bent.
An inflexible law.
inordinateUnusually or disproportionately large; excessive.
The case had taken up an inordinate amount of time.
intenseExtremely sharp or intense.
Intense itching and burning.
intolerableIncapable of being tolerated or endured.
An intolerable degree of sentimentality.
knockoutVery strong or vigorous.
A knockout punch.
life-threateningCausing fear or anxiety by threatening great harm.
mercilessShowing no mercy.
A merciless attack with a blunt instrument.
monasticResembling or suggestive of monks or their way of life, especially in being austere, solitary, or celibate.
She set her things round the monastic student bedroom.
mordantOf a substance, especially a strong acid; capable of destroying or eating away by chemical action.
Fun ranging from slapstick clowning to savage mordant wit.
nastyVery bad or unpleasant.
It s a nasty old night.
onerousNot easily borne; wearing.
My duties weren t onerous I only had to greet the guests.
oppressiveWeighing heavily on the senses or spirit.
Oppressive sorrows.
outrageousWildly exaggerated or improbable.
Spends an outrageous amount on entertainment.
pitiless(especially of weather) unrelentingly harsh or severe.
A night of pitiless rain.
plainLacking in physical beauty or proportion.
A plain girl with a freckled face.
polarHaving electrical or magnetic polarity.
Extreme and indefensible polar positions.
powerfulPossessing physical strength and weight rugged and powerful.
The most powerful government in western Europe.
punishingSevere and debilitating.
The band s punishing tour schedule.
punitive(of a tax or other charge) extremely high.
He called for punitive measures against the Eastern bloc.
puritanicalHaving or displaying a very strict or censorious moral attitude towards self-indulgence or sex.
His puritanical parents saw any kind of pleasure as the road to damnation.
relentlessNot to be placated or appeased or moved by entreaty.
Relentless persecution.
repressiveInhibiting or preventing the expression or awareness of thoughts or desires.
A repressive moral code.
restrainedUnder restraint.
His restrained gentlemanly voice.
rigidFixed and unmoving- Connor Cruise O’Brien.
A face rigid with pain.
rigorousExtremely thorough and careful.
The rigorous testing of consumer products.
rough(of an area or occasion) characterized by violent behaviour.
A rough answer.
ruthlessHaving or showing no pity or compassion for others.
A ruthless manipulator.
savage(of a person or group) primitive and uncivilized.
A savage race.
scathingWitheringly scornful; severely critical.
She launched a scathing attack on the Prime Minister.
scorchingHot and dry enough to burn or parch a surface.
Scorching heat.
searingHaving lost all moisture.
A searing indictment of the government s performance.
serious(of music, literature, or other art forms) requiring or meriting deep reflection.
The plan has a serious flaw.
sharpKeenly and painfully felt as if caused by a sharp edge or point.
C sharp.
siberianOf speech sounds produced by forcing air through a constricted passage (as `f’, `s’, `z’, or `th’ in both `thin’ and `then.
simpleDenoting a group that has no proper normal subgroup.
Simple mechanisms.
soberMuted in colour.
As sober as a judge.
sombreDark or dull in colour or tone.
The night skies were sombre and starless.
soreSevere; urgent.
It was a sore trial to him.
spareKept in reserve especially for emergency use.
He tried to write poetry in his spare time.
spartanPracticing great self-denial- William James.
A spartan existence.
starkSeverely simple.
A stark interior.
steelyResembling steel as in hardness.
There was a steely edge to his questions.
sternOf a stern or strict bearing or demeanor forbidding in aspect.
The past year has been a stern test of the ability of British industry.
stiffIncapable of or resistant to bending.
She was scared stiff.
stingingHaving a sting; capable of wounding or piercing with a sting.
A swarm of stinging insects.
stonyHard as granite.
Lucenzo s hard stony eyes.
strictCharacterized by strictness severity or restraint.
My father was very strict.
stringent(of regulations, requirements, or conditions) strict, precise, and exacting.
Stringent safety measures.
strongRelating to or denoting the strongest of the known kinds of force between particles which acts between nucleons and other hadrons when closer than about 10 cm so binding protons in a nucleus despite the repulsion due to their charge and which conserves strangeness parity and isospin.
A cup of strong coffee.
taxingNot easily borne; wearing.
A taxing schedule.
terribleUsed to emphasize the extent of something unpleasant or bad.
The weather was terrible.
toughPhysically toughened.
A tough break.
trenchantHaving keenness and forcefulness and penetration in thought, expression, or intellect.
A trenchant argument.
unadornedNot decorated with something to increase its beauty or distinction.
The unadorned truth.
unbearableIncapable of being tolerated or endured.
The heat was getting unbearable.
unbendingReserved, formal, or strict in one’s behaviour or attitudes; austere and inflexible.
An unbending will to dominate.
uncompromisingNot making concessions.
Uncompromising honesty.
undecoratedNot adorned or decorated.
The walls were completely undecorated.
unembellishedLacking embellishment or ornamentation.
The unembellished truth.
unendurableNot able to be tolerated or endured.
Cries of unendurable suffering.
unfriendlyNot friendly.
She shot him an unfriendly glance.
unfussyNot fussy.
A simple unfussy design.
unornamentedLacking embellishment or ornamentation.
An unornamented two storey building.
unreasonableNot guided by or based on good sense.
Unreasonable demands.
unrelentingPunishingly harsh.
The heat was unrelenting.
unsmiling(of a person or their manner or expression) serious or unfriendly; not smiling.
A large unsmiling woman.
unsparingVery generous.
An unsparing critic.
unyieldingStubbornly unyielding.
The Atlantic hurled its waves at the unyielding rocks.
very badBeing the exact same one; not any other.
very difficultBeing the exact same one; not any other.
violentMarked by extreme intensity of emotions or convictions inclined to react violently fervid.
A violent death.
wickedHaving committed unrighteous acts.
Despite the sun the wind outside was wicked.
wildProduced from wild animals or plants without cultivation.
The wild coastline of Cape Wrath.
withering(of heat) intense; scorching.
To compliments inflated I ve a withering reply.

Usage Examples of "Severe" as an adjective

  • A severe attack of asthma.
  • A severe worldwide depression.
  • A severe case of pneumonia.
  • A hefty six-footer with a rather severe mien.
  • A severe case of flu.
  • Severe pain.
  • The charges would have warranted a severe sentence.
  • The damage is not too severe.
  • She wore another severe suit, grey this time.
  • The house suffered severe damage.
  • A parent severe to the pitch of hostility.
  • A severe blow.
  • A severe shortage of technicians.
  • A severe test of stamina.

Associations of "Severe" (30 Words)

acuteDenoting or designed for patients with an acute form of a disease.
The acute phase of the illness.
asceticA person who follows an ascetic life.
Ascetic practices.
asperityHarsh qualities or conditions.
The asperity of northern winters.
austereSeverely simple.
He was an austere man with a rigidly puritanical outlook.
bitingCausing a sharply painful or stinging sensation; used especially of cold.
His biting satire on corruption and power.
demandingRequiring more than usually expected or thought due; especially great patience and effort and skill.
He was a demanding baby and rarely slept through the night.
draconian(of laws or their application) excessively harsh and severe.
The Nazis destroyed the independence of the press by a series of draconian laws.
exactingMaking great demands on one’s skill, attention, or other resources.
Certain highly specialized xerophytes are extremely exacting in their requirements.
extremeThe highest or most extreme degree of something.
Extreme danger.
graveCarve, cut, or etch into a material or surface.
A grave situation.
grievousOf great gravity or crucial import; requiring serious thought.
A grievous crime.
harshDisagreeable to the senses.
Drenched in a harsh white neon light.
inflexibleNot able to be changed or adapted to particular circumstances.
An inflexible knife blade.
intenseExtremely sharp or intense.
The heat was intense.
martinetA person who demands complete obedience; a strict disciplinarian.
The woman in charge was a martinet who treated all those beneath her like children.
pitilessWithout mercy or pity.
A night of pitiless rain.
pungent(of comment, criticism, or humour) having a sharp and caustic quality.
The pungent taste of radishes.
rigorousRigidly accurate; allowing no deviation from a standard.
Rigorous discipline.
rushing(of a player) advancing rapidly towards an opposing player, especially the quarterback.
Responders attempted to shut off the rushing water.
seriousRequiring effort or concentration; complex and not easy to answer or solve.
A serious attempt to learn to ski.
seriousnessThe trait of being serious- Robert Rice.
He learned the seriousness of his illness.
severitySomething hard to endure.
Sentences should reflect the severity of the crime.
spartanPracticing great self-denial.
Spartan courage.
stoutlyIn a resolute manner.
The houses are built stoutly of granite.
stringencyA state occasioned by scarcity of money and a shortage of credit.
stringentDemanding strict attention to rules and procedures.
Stringent guidelines on air pollution.
stringentlyIn a stringent manner.
Stringently controlled.
ultimateDenoting the maximum possible strength or resistance beyond which an object breaks.
One s ultimate goal in life.
unkindInconsiderate and harsh to others.
You were terribly unkind to her.
The heat was unrelenting.

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