What is Euphemism?

What is Euphemism

An indirect way to express something considered inappropriate.


  • “Put to sleep” or “put down” rather than “kill” or “euthanize”
  • “Downsizing” rather than “moving to smaller quarters”
  • “In a better place” or “passed away” for “died”
  • “Economically disadvantaged” for “poor”
  • “Lady of the evening” for “prostitute”
  • “Negative cash flow” for “broke”
  • “Between jobs” for “unemployed”
  • “Casualties” for “people killed”
  • “Collateral damage” for “innocent people dying”
  • “Friendly Fire” for “killing people on your own side of a conflict”

Click here to go back to the literary devices homepage.