The word scared is applied at least 1,282 times in spoken, fiction, magazines, and academic work. The term afraid is applied in more than five contexts and used more than 5,000 times, whereas the term frightened is used in different contexts in more than 2,500 times. This is according to the British National Corpus. These words are mainly used in different aspects to define the kind of emotion a person experiences in the event of fear. therefore, the three words are the common adjectives for defining the extent of feat and can be used as alternatives. These words have their individual meanings since there is not measure for the emotions. All these words can be followed by “of + -ing”, “to -infinitive form. Frightened, similar to scared defines sudden form of fear, and can be used before a noun, contrary to the word ‘afraid’.
The words can be used with no change in their meaning. For instance,
- Mary is afraid of dogs
Mary is scared of dogs
- The noise scared the baby
The noise frightened the baby
Illustration two can also be used to prove that both, ‘scared’ and ‘frightened’ show the same degree. These words can be used alternatively to define the causes of fear. For instance:
- The movie scary to the ladies
The movie was frightening to the ladies
In general, words that are more like synonyms have great variations. In this instance, the word ‘Frightened’ is an adjective of feeling that is formed by adding -ed to describe people. However, this pattern is not used when defining the term ‘scared’ and ‘afraid’. there is no adjective that is related to the term, ‘afraid’ whereas the term ‘scared’ is more of an adjective.