Big Words to Sound Smart and Intelligent

Let’s get one thing clear first: Just randomly learning big words to sound smart is not going to work. Learning lengthy words doesn’t automatically make you smarter. If you use the words in an inappropriate situation, it would rather have the opposite effect.

Know that a fancy word is not always the best word to use in every situation. But that should not discourage you from expanding your vocabulary. Learning new words and their correct usage can improve your communication skills and make your speech sound more attractive.

This article outlines some big and fancy words to not only sound smarter but also take your vocabulary to the next level.

Choosing Big Words to Sound Smart: Is It Wise?

When you can pronounce some fancy words but can’t use them comfortably, it shows in your body language and expression. Using these words can make you sound pompous.

In fact, it will make things look more like you’re trying too hard to appear intelligent to others. And you definitely don’t want that opposite effect when trying to look smart.

The bottom line: Be careful when choosing to use big words in your regular speech. Your best choices are ones that are appropriate for the situation and sound natural. It should sound like you’ve used them in conversations for years.

A person flipping a book placed on a black table
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

List of Advanced and Fancy Words With Examples

The following compilation of words will serve as a list of advanced vocabulary words to sound smarter, more intelligent, and more professional. They are just fancier ways of saying and describing regular things but will broaden your vocabulary effortlessly.


A cacophony is a harsh, loud, and unpleasant mixture of sounds. It could be musical, howling, horns, or even people talking.

Example: The cacophony of the alarm clock in the morning wakes everyone up at home.


Ubiquitous is used to describe something that seems to be found or present everywhere at the same time.

Example: You cannot compete with him because his ubiquitous influence ranges from family to the workplace.


The word is typically used to describe an action or activity of someone extremely evil or wicked.

Example: Her nefarious motives to encourage fraudulence in the company were soon exposed upon investigation.


It is used to describe something unpredictable or subject to unexpected changes in mood or behavior.

Example: It’s better not to talk to Laura today because she has been acting capricious all day.


A task or action carried out without genuine effort or interest.

Example: Mary’s perfunctory presentation clearly showed she didn’t work on it much.


It describes someone who enjoys the company of others or is particularly sociable.

Example: He has been an outgoing and gregarious guy since childhood.


It is used to describe a person who is highly attentive or concerned with small details and accuracy. This word changes meaning based on the context it is used.

Example: She cleaned the kitchen with fastidious care.


Used to describe the expression of highly shocked or amazed.

Example: Winning the lottery has totally left my family flabbergasted.


It describes someone who is unwilling to spend money or resources.

Example: It’s so surprising that the parsimonious Joe is giving us a treat!


It is used to describe something unquestionable or self-evident.

Example: It’s axiomatic that visionaries will always deal with great ideas.


The list of big words to sound smart can be intimidating to those unfamiliar with the art of using them. But understanding their proper usage will eventually make them easier to use in spoken communication.

Using long words doesn’t really determine someone’s intelligence or smartness. The key is to grasp their usage better and make it sound more natural as you incorporate these words into your language.

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

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