Even though dictionaries dont bring up as a synonym delve into with scrutinize I can see a overlap.

As far as I know for example we can scrutinize an art paint in order to find out if it is geniue or we can scrutinize in order to understand its deep meaning by deciphering every symbol on it.Another example I learned a mum can scrunitize her children's clothing to make sure they were dressed properly for school.

Can we do them with the verb delve into ?

Or delve into implies more like to trying find out something clandestine.

And I added the word immerse because I'd like to ask if we can scrutinize or devel into a book or movie which has engrossing and intricate plot in the sense of immerse.

1 Answer 1


In my experience with American English, I have never heard (and I would never use) scrutinize in the same manner as delve. Delve connotes research and close attention with respect to learning.

I can see where the confusion can arise (obviously close attention might seem like 'scrutiny'); however, they are distinct. A mother would never 'delve' into her children's clothing. She might be paying close attention, but because she is not gathering knowledge, and she is in fact looking for mistakes (perhaps the clothes are not appropriate for the weather) scrutinize fits far, far better in this sentence.

Additionally, immerse is generally used with respect to language, though not exclusively. You can immerse yourself in Spanish by living in Peru, for example. But in a more casual way, you can immerse yourself in a subject such as history by reading many books. I have heard people say that they are "immersing themselves in Shakespeare" by which they mean reading a lot of Shakespeare's plays.

Further, I would never use immerse and scrutinize as synonyms. Hope this helps.

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