Homophones and Homonyms

are words that sound like another when spoken but have different meanings and use, different spelling and origin.

Homonyms are words that are spelled like another but of a different meaning.
(e.g., bank= a place where you keep money,
bank= the edge of a river.

Words from the first group are the most common misused words in the English language when writing.

Most of the mistakes I see in writing on websites and blogs are words that are used quite often in the English language. Most of them fall into the homophones category. I see a lot of blogs that contain these common mistakes. Needless to say after a while I quit reading the blogs. So this is a reminder to all bloggers READ what you post and look for these common mistakes. I'm sure your readers will be very thankful.

I have been receiving emails with questions about oxymoron, euphemism, metaphor, cliche, palindrome,
anagram, and pleonasm.

The most frequent ones we see on the internet are usually OXYMORON. I know you have received (as all of us have) some ads/emails that say free loan, biggest little, and/or pretty ugly. I get a laugh every time I see these ads.

Well, my dear readers here are the answers to what each of these are.

oxymoron: a figure of speech by which a locution produces an incongruous, seemingly self-contradictory effect, as in "cruel kindness"

euphemism: 1. the substitution of a mild, indirect, or vague expression for one thought to be offensive, harsh, or blunt. 2. the expression so substituted: "To pass away" is a euphemism for "to die."

metaphor: a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a similarity, as in "love is a battlefield.

cliche': A phrase or opinion that is overused and betrays a lack of original thought. For example: "One man’s trash is another man’s treasure."

palindrome: A word, phrase, verse, or sentence that reads the same backward or forward. For example: A man, a plan, a canal, Panama!

anagram: a word, phrase, or sentence formed from another by rearranging its letters: “Angel” is an anagram of “glean.”

pleonasm: 1. the use of more words than are necessary to express an idea; redundancy.
2. an instance of this, as free gift or true fact.
3. a redundant word or expression.

A little language humor

A little language humor

Word for the week: arachibutyrophobia

Learn a new word every week to expand your vocabulary.

Almost everyone likes peanut butter but there are some who suffer with arachibutyrophobia

rachibutyrophobia : fear of peanut butter sticking to roof of mouth

I don't think a Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Psychotherapists or a Mental Health Specialists
would ever use this word in front of a patient who has this phobia even if it is the correct word for their fear.

hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia... the fear of long words

Adj.; A subject of jest or mockery – This word describes a person, thing or situation that is likely to be the butt of jokes. Use it when you want to sound justified in poking fun at someone.
erotem: noun; The symbol used in writing known as a question mark...?
Phantomnation: "rare" noun; a perfect example of a ghost word--a word that exists only in a dictionary and has never actually been used.

neologism: noun ; coining of new words, new word or meaning

enormity: noun;heinousness, evilness, wickedness, monstrous, great size

abscond: verb; to run away and hide, depart hurriedly, avoid arrest.

samizdat: noun; clandestine publication of banned literature

anomaly: noun; something different, abnormal, peculiar, or not easily classified; deviation from the normal or common order, or form, or rule; a person who is unusual

obfuscate: verb; To make something obscure or hard to understand. ( Like the tax codes)

quintessence: noun; purest and most perfect form, manifestation, type, or embodiment

Lipogram: noun; A piece of writing that avoids one or more letters of the alphabet. From Greek lipo- (lacking) + gram (something written).]

triskaidekaphobia: noun; Fear of the number 13.

anomalous: adjective; irregular, deviant, abnormal

diatribe: noun; a bitter verbal attack or speech

ennui: noun; mental weariness, boredom

aficionado: noun; devotee of a sport or pastime

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Among or Between

in, into, or through the midst of; in association or connection with; surrounded by: He was among friends.


in the space separating (two points, objects, etc.): between New York and Chicago.

intermediate to, in time, quantity, or degree: between twelve and one o'clock; between 50 and 60 apples; between pink and red.

linking; connecting: air service between cities.

in portions for each of (two people): splitting the profits between them.

The simplest rule of thumb is to use "among" if there are 3 or more people, places or things and to use "between" if there are only 2 people, places or things. For example, say "James and Jerry will split the check between them, but We will divided the grocery bill among all 3 of us.

Determine whether the places,things or people are involved in a direct relationship. If there is one-to-one correspondence, use "between" even when there are more than two people, places or things being discussed. For example, "There was many disagreements between Mary, Mark and John."


Anonymous said...

how do u do?

Michael said...

Thanks for samizdat and Lipogram.

The Psyche of Mikey

Dylan said...

I just stumbled upon your blog, and I was simply wondering about the title of your website. Shouldn't it be "Common English Grammatical Mistakes," since the word grammar is a noun, not an adjective? I could obviously be incorrect, but I would appreciate it if you would clear that up for me. Thanks!

Keyla Hendrik said...

I need to read this kind of blog to make my writing style better. It's great tip. Thank you

Shirley said...

Answer to Dylan...
"The expression "grammatical error or mistakes" sounds, and is, in a sense, paradoxical, for the reason that a form can not be grammatical and erroneous at the same time. One would not say musical discord. . . . Because of the apparent contradiction of terms, the form grammatical error should be avoided and 'error in construction,' or 'error in English,' etc., be used in its stead. Of course one should never say, 'good grammar' or 'bad grammar.' The usage in the title is also used as a noun.

Nilesh said...

I’m just seeing this post for the first time. Thank you so much for mentioning me. What a great feeling. Thanks again!

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GooooooooD . I like the effrts.

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