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What is the opposite of โ€œmercifullyโ€?


Notes from a Native English Speaker

Antonym: An antonym is a word opposite in meaning to another word. By familiarizing yourself with the opposite meaning of words, you can add more variety to your descriptions and better understand written texts. Plus, knowing antonyms can help you communicate accurately and emphasize contrasting points in discussions and when expressing your opinions. So, get to know opposites and improve your English skills today!

What is the antonym of โ€œmercifullyโ€?

The antonyms of mercifully are cruelly, harshly, and mercilessly. These words convey a lack of mercy or kindness and imply a harsh or cruel treatment.

Brief Definitions of the Antonym(s)

Learn when and how to use these words with these examples!

In a manner that causes pain, suffering, or distress to others.


The prisoners were treated cruelly by their captors.

In a severe or strict manner; lacking gentleness or kindness.


The teacher scolded the student harshly for not completing the homework.

In a manner that shows no mercy or compassion; without pity or kindness.


The dictator ruled mercilessly and showed no mercy to his opponents.

How are these antonyms different from each other?

  • 1Cruelly implies causing pain, suffering, or distress to others.
  • 2Harshly implies being severe or strict, lacking gentleness or kindness.
  • 3Mercilessly implies showing no mercy or compassion, without pity or kindness.

Good things to know

  • 1Enhance Communication: Use these antonyms to express different degrees of cruelty or harshness.
  • 2Show Empathy: Avoid using these antonyms when describing people or situations that require kindness or compassion.
  • 3Enrich Writing: Utilize these antonyms in narratives to create tension, conflict, and drama.

Remember this!

The antonyms have distinct nuances: Cruelly implies causing pain or distress, harshly implies being severe or strict, and mercilessly implies showing no mercy. Use these words to enhance communication, avoid them when describing kind or compassionate situations, and enrich writing by creating tension and drama.

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