|False Friends 3|
Here’s another batch of homophones, heterographs and easy-to-mix-up-pairs-of-words.
Having used up all the obvious words that get mixed up in False Friends 1 & False Friends 2, I wonder anyone writing for children is using False Friends 3?
See False Friends One here and False Friends Two here
tool for making holes / a prediction or omen (noun), to predict or foretell (verb)
bated / baited
in anxious suspense, as in ‘bated breath’ / deliberately taunted, or having bait on a hook
eclipse / ellipse
temporary shading of the sun by the moon or the moon by the earth etc / elongated circle shape, typically the shape of the path of a planet round the sun
censor / censure
to suppress ‘unacceptable’ aspects of writing, film, etc (verb), the official with that role (noun) / to denouce or criticise (verb), severe disapproval or harsh criticism (noun)
continually / continuously
repeatedly / all the time without a break
|Crochet or Crotchet?|
crochet / crotchet
creative yarn hooking / musical note, quarter of a semibreve, half a minim. Crotchet also has an old meaning as an eccentric opinion, which continues as the adjective ‘crotchety’.
cue / queue
billiards/snooker/pool implement (noun) or to give someone the nod to begin (verb), or that nod (noun) / to form a line in anticipation (verb) or that line (noun) or a long hair braid (noun)
curb / kerb
to restrain (US and UK verb), edge of a sidewalk (US noun) / edge of a pavement (UK noun)
desert / dessert
arid land (noun) or to abandon (verb) / pudding (remember something sweet)
|Lost in the dessert?|
disinterested / uninterested
impartial, unbiased / not interested, indifferent (but disinterested is increasingly used to mean uninterested)
empathy / sympathy
to acknowledge another’s dilemma and be able to offer comfort and understanding because of personal experience / to acknowledge another’s dilemma and be able to offer comfort and understanding enervate / invigorate
enervate / invigorate
to weaken (or a medical term for removing a nerve) / to strengthen or energise (enervate can be mistaken for invigorate because it sounds vaguely likely energise, though it means the opposite)
foment / ferment
to incite or encourage trouble (or to apply heat) / to cause a chemical change (often resulting in alcohol). Ferment is increasingly used with the foment meaning (kicking off politically) which to some extent it has always had. However using ferment to describe instigating revolution can look like you’ve accidentally failed to use the more precise word.
flair / flare
an aptitude or talent / a sudden burst or increase (and the associated verb), also an item designed to issue a burst of light. Additionally describes trouser fashion
imply / infer
to seek to convey a meaning, which the receiver must interpret / to receive information and form a conclusion. Infer is used for imply so often it may eventually be acceptable (but not yet).
libel / slander
written defamation / spoken defamation
perquisite / prerequisite
an extra benefit or payment (shortens to ‘perk’) / something to be achieved before something else
prevaricate / procastinate
to speak or act in an evasive way / to put off doing something that needs to be done
main or chief (adjective), head or chief or main performer (noun) / a belief or a rule
redolent / resonant
reminiscent and suggestive, or having an aromatic, fragrant smell / reminiscent and evocative, or having a strong, deep sound
SCBWI British Isles Winchester Conference.
Excitement is bubbling as the conference gets nearer. We're so thrilled that our very own, and rather wonderful, Catriona will be sharing her knowledge and expertise at this year's conference. Click here for more details.
Catriona Tippin has been a member of SCBWI since 2006 and helps organise venues for SCBWI North East. Details of her writing and illustrating here. She proofreads study guides, house magazines and publicity material for national educational organisations, in addition to working on a variety of proofreads and copyedits for the growing self-published world. Her monthly column is intended to give you food for thought, remembering “Any correction of the speech or writing of others will contain at least one grammatical, spelling or typographical error” (McKean’s Law, named after its inventor Erin McKean, editor of the Oxford American Dictionary).