Homophone (ho·​mo·​phone)

Definition of Homophone

1. Grammar: One of two or more words pronounced alike but different in meaning or derivation or spelling (such as the words to, too, and two)

2. A character or group of characters pronounced the same as another character or group

What is a Homophone?

It’s a word that’s pronounced the same (but it can vary) as another word but differs in meaning, and may also differ in spelling. Two words may be spelled the same, as in rose (flower) and rose (past tense of rise), or differently, as in rain, reign, and rein.

A homophone can also apply to units longer or shorter than words, like as phrases, letters, or groups of letters, which are pronounced the same as another phrase, letter, or group of letters. Any unit with this property is said to be “homophonous”.

10 Common Homophones

1. Brake/break: If you don’t brake in time, you could break your car’s headlight.

2. Sell/cell: If you sell stolen goods, you may end up in a prison cell.

3. Flour/flower: You need flour as an ingredient to bake a cake that has a flower on top as a decoration.

4. For/four: You might have four blankets that you use for staying warm.

5. Not/knot: A lot of people still do not know how to tie a knot.

6. Right/write: They say there is no right way to write a great book — but it helps to have good grammar!

7. Son/sun: A mother or father will want to keep their son out of the sun between 10 am and 4 pm in the summer months.

8. Steel/steal: Some tools are made from steel, which some nefarious people choose to steal.

9. Whether/weather: Unless you check the forecast, you might not know whether the weather will turn nasty.

10. Hour/our: There is one hour until our dinner is ready to eat.

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