Synonyms of head in English:


See definition of head


1‘she was hurt when her head hit the ground’


skull, cranium, crown

informal nut, noodle, noddle, nob, noggin, dome

British informal bonce, napper

Northern English Scottish informal poll

informal, dated bean, conk

archaic pate, Costard, crumpet

2‘this new job meant he had to use his head’


brain, brains, brainpower, intellect, intelligence, intellectual capacity, mental capacity, powers of reasoning

wit, wits, wisdom, mind, sense, reasoning, rationality, mentality, understanding, common sense

informal nous, grey matter, savvy, brainbox, brain cells, upper storey

British informal loaf

North American informal smarts

South African informal kop

3‘she had a good head for business’


aptitude, faculty, flair, talent, gift, capacity, ability, knack, bent

mind, brain

4‘the head of the Dutch Catholic Church’


leader, chief, boss, controller, master, supervisor, governor, superintendent, foreman, forewoman, headman

commander, commanding officer, captain

director, managing director, chief executive, manager

principal, head teacher, headmaster, headmistress

president, premier, prime minister, ruler

chair, chairman, chairwoman, chairperson

North American chief executive officer, CEO

informal boss man, kingpin, top dog, big cheese, bigwig, Mr Big, skipper

British informal gaffer, guv'nor

North American informal numero uno, head honcho, padrone, sachem, big white chief, big kahuna, big wheel, high muckamuck



5‘at the head of the queue’


front, beginning, start, fore, forefront, top, leading position, foremost position


back, bottom

6‘the head of the River Thames’


source, origin, well head, headspring, headwater, headwaters

South African eye

literary wellspring, fount, fountain



7‘beer with a creamy head’


froth, foam, bubbles, spume, mousse, fizz, effervescence, lather, suds


1‘the head waiter’


chief, principal, leading, main, first, front, prime, premier, foremost, top, topmost, highest, supreme, pre-eminent, high-ranking, top-ranking, most important

North American ranking

informal top-notch




1‘the St George's Day procession was headed by the mayor’


be at the front of, lead, be the leader of, be at the head of

be first, go first, lead the way


be at the back of, bring up the rear of

2‘an organizational unit headed by a line manager’


be in charge of, be at the head of, be in command of, command, be in control of, control, lead, be the leader of, run, manage, direct, administer, supervise, superintend, oversee, preside over, rule, govern, captain, be the boss of, be at the helm of

3‘he was heading for the exit’


move towards, go towards, make for, aim for, make one's way towards, go in the direction of, direct one's steps towards, be bound for, steer for, make a beeline for

set out in the direction of, set out for, start out for


move away from


    at the head of

      ‘his years at the head of the company’


      in charge of, in control of, in command of, at the top of, at the helm of, at the controls of, as leader of, in the driving seat of, at the wheel of, responsible for, accountable for, liable for

      managing, running, administering, directing, supervising, overseeing, controlling, commanding, leading, heading up, looking after, taking care of

    be head and shoulders above

      ‘he was always head and shoulders above the rest but he was very modest’


      outclass, surpass, be superior to, be better than, outshine, overshadow, eclipse, dwarf, put in the shade, upstage, transcend

      top, cap, trump, trounce, beat, defeat, better, put to shame, exceed, leave behind, outrank

      be a cut above, run rings round, leave standing, walk away from


      outrival, outvie

    come to a head

      ‘the violence came to a head with the deaths of six youths’


      reach a crisis, come to a climax, reach a critical point, reach a turning point, reach a crossroads


      come to the crunch

    go to someone's head

      1‘the wine has gone to my head’


      intoxicate, inebriate, befuddle, make someone intoxicated, make someone drunk, make someone dizzy, make someone's head spin


      make someone woozy

      2‘her victory went to her head’


      make someone conceited, make someone arrogant, turn someone's head, make someone full of themselves, puff someone up

    keep one's head

      ‘he takes chances but keeps his head’


      keep calm, stay calm, keep cool, stay cool, remain unruffled, keep control of oneself, keep one's self-control, maintain one's equilibrium, maintain one's composure


      keep one's cool, keep one's shirt on


      lose control of oneself

    lose one's head

      ‘I lost my head and started a big fuss’


      lose control of oneself, lose one's composure, lose one's self-control, lose one's equilibrium, lose control of the situation, go to pieces, fall to pieces

      panic, go mad, get flustered, get confused, get angry, get excited, get hysterical


      lose one's cool, freak out, crack up

      British informal

      go into a spin, go into a flat spin, throw a wobbly


      keep control of oneself

    head someone/something off

      1‘he ran up the road to head off approaching cars’


      intercept, divert, deflect, redirect, reroute, turn aside, draw away, turn away, cut off

      2‘they headed off a row by ordering further study of both plans’


      forestall, avert, ward off, fend off, stave off, hold off, nip in the bud, keep at bay

      prevent, avoid, stop, check, thwart



    head something up

      ‘he will head up the new communications division’


      be in charge of, be at the head of, head, be in command of, command, be in control of, control, lead, be the leader of, run, manage, direct, administer, supervise, superintend, oversee, preside over, rule, govern, captain, be the boss of, be at the helm of