Anyone who’s listened to people speaking English for a while has likely noticed that there are sometimes words or expressions used which sound the same but mean something different. An example of this are the words: cubical and cubicle, which sound the same. So which one do they mean? Is it cubical, which means ‘shaped like a cube?’ Or is it cubicle, which means ‘a partition, or compartment?’ This reference section provides a sampling of examples of other words which are often confused with, or mistaken for similar sounding words.
It’s important to know which spelling of a word matches the sound you’re hearing. It is also important to understand what meaning matches that sound. In some instances the same spelling occurs for words which have different pronunciations and different meanings. For example, T E A R is the spelling for the word tear: to rip or pull apart. It is also the same spelling for the word tear: eye fluid. They sound differently and have different meanings, but look the same.
We created this section as a reference for identifying words which are often misunderstood in these and similar ways. Such words are found throughout the English Language; and we can’t possibly list them all. However we are highlighting several words with these characteristics, which we’ve discovered; or tripped over. We will add more entries, during our ongoing cataloging process. [W.S.]
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