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Top 10 Confused English Words [U-Z]

Over on Daily Writing Tips, Maeve Maddox (what a great name!) gives us her top 10 confused English words, the final chapter. I have to admit that growing up in Massachusetts weather / whether were difficult for me because they both sounded like “wheatha”. I had the same problem with father and farther. What are your confused words?

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Top 10 Confused English Words [U-Z]

Puzzled Confused Lost Signpost Showing Puzzling ProblemHaving come to the end of the alphabet with my series of “words often confused with one another,” I find myself hard-pressed to come up with a final set of ten for the remaining letters, U-Z. I can’t think of any for U or Z, but here are some for V, W, and Y.

1. vane / vain / vein
All three sound alike and speakers know what they mean when they say them. The confusion arises with the spellings.

INCORRECT: A cupola sat astride the angled wedge of the rooftop, sporting a beautiful gold colored weather vain.
CORRECT: A cupola sat astride the angled wedge of the rooftop, sporting a beautiful gold colored weather vane.

INCORRECT: If we cut one of our vains what chance do we have to live?
CORRECT: If we cut one of our veins what chance do we have to live?

vane noun: a blade that rotates

vain adjective: 1. hopeless: “She continues to harbor a vain desire to write a novel that will make her rich.”
2. having an excessively high opinion of one’s own appearance, attainments, qualities, or possessions: “He is especially vain about his hair.”

vein noun: the tubular vessels in which the blood is conveyed through the animal body.

Check the rest of the post and the whole series on Daily Writing Tips

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