The tricky world of homophones!!!

We thought it would be nice to do this blog post on homophones. Now some of you might be saying homo what?? So we will explain. Homophones are defined by the Cambridge dictionary as: A word that sounds the same or is spelled the same as another word but has a different meaning. Now these words can really drive you up the wall and quite easily make you put your foot in it.

So in this post we will go over a few of them and explain the difference between the words and thus hopefully help you to avoid making these mistakes!! Aren’t we kind at enunciate online. J

We will start it off with bare and bear. Bare means to be without any clothes or not covered by anything. i.e. to be butt naked ( the way you were brought into this world). 😉 It can also mean empty, unfinished, revealing i.e. to bare one’s soul.   Whilst bear means: (apart from the big furry thing) to carry, to have or display a visible mark or feature, to be called by, to conduct yourself in a certain way, to support, take responsibility for, to accept or stand something, endure, tolerate, to give birth to and finally to turn and proceed. Wow, how many different meanings!!! So here are some examples of bear. E.g. the soldiers were bearing machine guns; he bore the surname Jones, He bore the sign of the beast, I can’t bear to part with my old comics, she bore six kids and finally, bare left when you reach the traffic lights.

So how do you make the distinction?? Apart from having lessons via Skype with enunciate online you can remember that anything to do with nakedness, uncovering or revealing is bare, the rest of the meanings will be bear.

Another set of wonderful homophones are witch and which. Now a witch is what normally sits on a broomstick and has a large nose and makes spells, whereas which is a relative pronoun that refers to something previously mentioned or gives more information. A way of remembering, which is which 😉 is to say the sentence: The witch had an itch. As only a person can have an itch you will know which one you are talking about and if you add the w to itch you get…. J

Lose and loose can also cause some unpleasant moments. It wouldn’t be the first time we have seen someone make this mistake. So what’s the difference? Firstly, one is a verb: to lose. Real Madrid will lose the match and the second is an adjective, I have a loose tooth. A good way to remember is with this mnemonic: If I lose any more weight, my jeans will be too loose.J

And last but not least, our last homophones for this post are weather and whether. Now this is another typical mistake that a lot of people make. Weather is a noun and refers to the state of the atmosphere. Whether is a conjunction and expresses a doubt or a choice between alternatives. A nice way to remember which is which is that the weather has an effect on what you eat. In the word weather you can see the word eat. Hopefully our post has helped you to clear up some doubts that you may have. At www.enunciateonline.com  we will be more than glad to teach you more tricks like these with our English lessons via Skype and get you communicating clearly.

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