What is the difference between awesome and awful? - ProProfs Discuss
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What is the difference between awesome and awful?

Asked by K. Parker, Last updated: May 26, 2020

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Elena Sheldon

Being in the arts and science department amuses me every day.

Elena Sheldon, Director of research, Diploma in Arts and Science, Berkeley, California

Answered May 19, 2020

Awesome and awful are two words, usually considered as antonyms. However, both words have certain meanings that make them look very similar. In spite of this little similarity, there are still some differences between the two. Awful is an adjective that describes anything that feels very bad.

For example, I saw such an awful movie last night that l had to stop the movie before the end. Also, as an adjective, it is used to describe something that causes fear and horror. It can also be used to describe something that is exceedingly great.

On the other hand, awesome is an adjective that describes anything that causes awe or terror and, at the same time, inspiring excitement and wonder.

For example, the waterfall I saw in the movie was an awesome sight. You might think this is similar in meaning to awful, but awesome has more positive connotations compared to awful.

 

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