Describing Words

examples: nosewinterblue eyeswoman

This tool helps you find adjectives for things that you're trying to describe. Also check out and

Click words for definitions.

Words to Describe process

Below is a list of describing words for process. You can sort the descriptive words by uniqueness or commonness using the button above. Sorry if there's a few unusual suggestions! The algorithm isn't perfect, but it does a pretty good job for most common nouns. Here's the list of words that can be used to describe process:

  • lateral iliac
  • procedural due
  • pseudobasal
  • anxious and endless
  • slow digestive
  • ongoing, dynamic
  • paroccipital
  • social reproductive
  • irritatingly lengthy
  • slow educational
  • simple but subtle
  • undisturbed meditative
  • remarkably languorous
  • gradual and remarkably languorous
  • extraordinary osmotic
  • sterno-coxal
  • manubrial
  • wasteful and inequitable
  • slow and fortuitous
  • double or mutual
  • chemothermal
  • extremely permanent
  • regular preservative
  • external angular
  • roundabout, infantile
  • great catalytic
  • transparent electoral
  • easy and merely mechanical
  • certain glacier-like
  • astonishing subconscious
  • inordinately complex
  • pectineal
  • slower and uglier
  • full-blown legal
  • gradual, uncertain
  • elusive magical
  • bitter intestinal
  • pathological and morbid
  • all-important digestive
  • painful, clumsy
  • speeded-up geological
  • gradual and quiet
  • internal angular
  • careful, gradual
  • gross intermediate
  • undeniably sloppy
  • cumbersome, time-consuming
  • complex, dynamic
  • conscious intuitive
  • orderly mathematical
  • spontaneous literal
  • cumulative and collective
  • mechanical and straightforward
  • mysterious and ceramic
  • parallel developmental
  • pious but somewhat frigid
  • sure but unexplainable
  • well-known etymological
  • twofold logical
  • lateral angular
  • courteous clever
  • ancient disruptive
  • new or continuous
  • silent electrical
  • costly long-term
  • hellishly painful
  • early energy-producing
  • long and mystic
  • single, streamlined
  • alien but effective
  • acute and savage
  • especially acute and savage
  • efficient wasteremoval
  • wasteremoval
  • due electoral
  • biologically selective
  • slow humiliating
  • recursive informational
  • effective selective
  • everlasting and perpetual
  • creditable or pleasant
  • frightfully tedious
  • entoglossal
  • natural philological
  • violent and shorter
  • radical but necessary
  • exquisitely personal
  • natural anthropomorphic
  • somewhat messy and painful
  • moderately delicate
  • lengthy, annoying
  • computerized biological
  • perennial and cumulative
  • mysterious geological
  • natural, long-term
  • superior rational
  • slow and repetitive
  • long and costly legal
  • evolutionary runaway
  • intricate methodological

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Describing Words

The idea for the Describing Words engine came when I was building the engine for Related Words (it's like a thesaurus, but gives you a much broader set of related words, rather than just synonyms). While playing around with word vectors and the "HasProperty" API of conceptnet, I had a bit of fun trying to get the adjectives which commonly describe a word. Eventually I realised that there's a much better way of doing this: parse books!

Project Gutenberg was the initial corpus, but the parser got greedier and greedier and I ended up feeding it somewhere around 100 gigabytes of text files - mostly fiction, including many contemporary works. The parser simply looks through each book and pulls out the various descriptions of nouns.

Hopefully it's more than just a novelty and some people will actually find it useful for their writing and brainstorming, but one neat little thing to try is to compare two nouns which are similar, but different in some significant way - for example, gender is interesting: "woman" versus "man" and "boy" versus "girl". On an inital quick analysis it seems that authors of fiction are at least 4x more likely to describe women (as opposed to men) with beauty-related terms (regarding their weight, features and general attractiveness). In fact, "beautiful" is possibly the most widely used adjective for women in all of the world's literature, which is quite in line with the general unidimensional representation of women in many other media forms. If anyone wants to do further research into this, let me know and I can give you a lot more data (for example, there are about 25000 different entries for "woman" - too many to show here).

The blueness of the results represents their relative frequency. You can hover over an item for a second and the frequency score should pop up. The "uniqueness" sorting is default, and thanks to my Complicated Algorithm™, it orders them by the adjectives' uniqueness to that particular noun relative to other nouns (it's actually pretty simple). As you'd expect, you can click the "Sort By Usage Frequency" button to adjectives by their usage frequency for that noun.

Special thanks to the contributors of the open-source mongodb which was used in this project.

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