Confusing Homophones






Confusing Homophones:


Confusion sometimes occur in the minds of readers when it is becoming difficult to differentiate between two or more words which are similar in form….but with different meanings and pronunciations. Many words and phrases are frequently abused or misused.

The best way to avoid confusion is to gel familiar with such confusing words and phrases as good usage in English is based on the excellent knowledge of meanings, pronunciations and spellings of words and phrases.

Thus homophones which are considered as confusing are discussed in this chapter with an objective to avoid the flawed interpretations of bewildering words…thereby enhancing the knowledge of the readers.

A homophone is a word that is pronounced the same as another word…but differs in meaning. The words may be spelled the same such as rose (flower) and rose (past tense of rise) or differently such as carat, caret and carrot. Thus, words which are similar in pronunciation, but unlike in spelling and meaning, are known as homophones.

Note : Homophones of multiple words (or) phrases are also known as oronyms.

Oronyms are words which are pronunced the same. Generally the word homophone is used to describe one of a pair or group of words that have the same sound (like prince and prints & allowed and aloud) whilstoronyms are normally strings of words (phrases) such as iced ink and Istink.

For examples :

ice cream vs. I scream

depend vs. deep end

euthanasia vs. youth in Asia

The difference between…


  1. abandon and abundant
  2. aboard and abroad
  3. absolute and obsolete
  4. abstract and obstruct
  5. accent and ascent
  6. accessary and accessory
  7. accident, incident and occident
  8. accomplish and accomplice
  9. adapt, adept and adopt
  10. adverse, averse and obverse
  11. advert and avert
  12. advice and advise
  13. affectation and affection
  14. afflict and inflict
  15. age and edge
  16. air and heir
  17. ail and ale
  18. alimentary and elementary
  19. allay and alley
  20. allowed and aloud
  21. all together and altogether
  22. alms and arms
  23. altar and alter
  24. amateur and armature
  25. annual and annul
  26. ante and anti
  27. apposite and opposite
  28. appraise and apprise
  29. ardour and odour
  30. argument and augment
  31. arraign and arrange
  32. aspire and inspire
  33. assure and azure





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