Confusing Words and Some Common Mistakes in English


In this section we will cover confusing words and some common mistakes in English.

Learn these important word pairs with illustrations, definitions, examples, tips, practice stories, final quizzes, and answers.

Click Here for Step-by-Step Rules, Stories and Exercises to Practice All English Tenses

Click Here for Step-by-Step Rules, Stories and Exercises to Practice All Tenses


The English language has quite a few words that appear so similar that it's hard to tell the difference.

For example, what's the difference between speak and talk? Advice and Advise? Ad and add?

We will fully explain all these pairs and many others in this section.

Some of these explanations are taken from the Really Learn English Newsletter.

Confusing Words and Some Common Mistakes in English


Confusing Words – Explained!

(ordered alphabetically)

What's the difference Between "accept" and "except"?

What's the difference Between "ad" and "add"?

What's the difference Between "adapt" and "adopt"?

What's the difference Between "adverse" and "averse"?

What's the difference Between "advice" and "advise"?

What's the difference between "affect" and "effect"?

What's the difference between "aid" and "aide"?

What's the difference between "aisle" and "isle"?

What's the difference between "already" and "all ready"?

What's the difference between "all together" and "altogether"?

What's the difference between "allowed" and "aloud"?

What's the difference between "alter " and "altar "?

What's the difference between "amount" and "number"?

What's the difference between "amused" and "bemused"?

What's the difference between "assent " and "ascent "?

What's the difference between "are", "our" and "hour"?

What's the difference between "bad" and "badly"?

What's the difference between "bear" and "bare"?

What's the difference between "been to" and "gone to"?

What's the difference between "beside" and "besides"?

What's the difference between "between" and "among"?

What's the difference between "borrowing" a book and "lending" a book?

What's the difference between "break" and "brake"?

What's the difference between "bring" and "take"?

What's the difference between "capital" and "capitol"?

What's the difference between "censor" and "censure"?

What's the difference between "coarse" and "course"?

What's the difference between "compliment" and "complement"?

What's the difference between "conform" and "confirm"?

What's the difference between "council" and "counsel"?

What's the difference between "crash" and "crush"?

What's the difference between "custom" and "costume"?

What's the difference between "desert" and "dessert"?

What's the difference between "dual" and "duel"?

What's the difference between "e.g." and "i.e."?

What's the difference between "expand" and "expend"?

What is the difference between "every day" and "everyday"?

What's the difference between "fare" and "fair"?

What's the difference between "farther" and "further"?

What's the difference between "good" and "well"?

What's the difference between "hear" and "listen"?

What's the difference between "imply" and "infer"?

What's the difference between "into" and "in to"?

What's the difference between "it is..." and "there is..."?

What's the difference between "later" and "latter"?

What's the difference between "like" and "as"?

What's the difference between "loose" and "lose"?

What's the difference between "immigrate", "emigrate," and "migrate"?

What's the difference between "meat" and "meet"?

What's the difference between "nowhere", "somewhere", "everywhere", and "anywhere"?

What's the difference between "of" and "off"?

What's the difference between "past" and "passed"?

What's the difference between "peace" and "piece"?

What's the difference between "peek", "pique", and "peak"?

What's the difference between "pole" and "poll"?

What's the difference between "pour" and "pore"?

What's the difference between "principle" and "principal"?

What's the difference between "precede" and "proceed"?

What's the difference between "rain", "rein", and "reign"?

What's the difference between "raise" and "rise"?

What's the difference between "stationary" and "stationery"?

What's the difference between "story" and "storey"?

What's the difference between "then " and "than"?

What's the difference between "you and I" and "you and me"?

What's the difference between "waist" and "waste"?

What's the difference between "weak" and "week"?

What's the difference between "weather" and "whether"?

What's the difference between "which" and "witch"?

What's the holiday season and what's the difference between the different holiday season greetings?


See also:

Synonyms and Antonyms

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