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  1. Adverbial
  2. Agentive ending
  3. Ain't
  4. American and British English differences
  5. American and British English pronunciation differences
  6. American and British English spelling differences
  7. American English
  8. Amn't
  9. Anglophone
  10. Anglosphere
  11. Apostrophe
  12. Australian English
  13. Benjamin Franklin's phonetic alphabet
  14. Bracket
  15. British and American keyboards
  16. British English
  17. Canadian English
  18. Certificate of Proficiency in English
  19. Classical compound
  20. Cockney
  21. Colon
  22. Comma
  23. Comma splice
  24. Cut Spelling
  25. Dangling modifier
  26. Dash
  27. Definite article reduction
  28. Disputed English grammar
  29. Don't-leveling
  30. Double copula
  31. Double negative
  32. Ellipsis
  33. English alphabet
  34. English compound
  35. English declension
  36. English English
  37. English grammar
  38. English honorifics
  39. English irregular verbs
  40. English language learning and teaching
  41. English modal auxiliary verb
  42. English orthography
  43. English passive voice
  44. English personal pronouns
  45. English phonology
  46. English plural
  47. English relative clauses
  48. English spelling reform
  49. English verbs
  50. English words with uncommon properties
  51. Estuary English
  52. Exclamation mark
  53. Foreign language influences in English
  54. Full stop
  55. Generic you
  56. Germanic strong verb
  57. Gerund
  58. Going-to future
  59. Grammatical tense
  60. Great Vowel Shift
  61. Guillemets
  62. Habitual be
  63. History of linguistic prescription in English
  64. History of the English language
  65. Hyphen
  66. I before e except after c
  67. IELTS
  68. Initial-stress-derived noun
  69. International Phonetic Alphabet for English
  70. Interpunct
  71. IPA chart for English
  72. It's me
  73. Languages of the United Kingdom
  74. Like
  75. List of animal adjectives
  76. List of British idioms
  77. List of British words not widely used in the United States
  78. List of case-sensitive English words
  79. List of commonly confused homonyms
  80. List of common misspellings in English
  81. List of common words that have two opposite senses
  82. List of dialects of the English language
  83. List of English apocopations
  84. List of English auxiliary verbs
  85. List of English homographs
  86. List of English irregular verbs
  87. List of English prepositions
  88. List of English suffixes
  89. List of English words invented by Shakespeare
  90. List of English words of Celtic origin
  91. List of English words of Italian origin
  92. List of English words with disputed usage
  93. List of frequently misused English words
  94. List of Fumblerules
  95. List of homophones
  96. List of -meters
  97. List of names in English with non-intuitive pronunciations
  98. List of words having different meanings in British and American English
  99. List of words of disputed pronunciation
  100. London slang
  101. Longest word in English
  102. Middle English
  103. Modern English
  104. Names of numbers in English
  105. New Zealand English
  106. Northern subject rule
  107. Not!
  108. NuEnglish
  109. Oxford spelling
  110. Personal pronoun
  111. Phonological history of the English language
  112. Phrasal verb
  113. Plural of virus
  114. Possessive adjective
  115. Possessive antecedent
  116. Possessive me
  117. Possessive of Jesus
  118. Possessive pronoun
  119. Preposition stranding
  120. Pronunciation of English th
  121. Proper adjective
  122. Question mark
  123. Quotation mark
  124. Received Pronunciation
  125. Regional accents of English speakers
  126. Rhyming slang
  127. Run-on sentence
  128. Scouse
  129. Semicolon
  130. Semordnilap
  131. Serial comma
  132. Shall and will
  133. Silent E
  134. Singular they
  135. Slash
  136. SoundSpel
  137. Space
  138. Spelling reform
  139. Split infinitive
  140. Subjective me
  141. Suffix morpheme
  142. Tag question
  143. Than
  144. The Reverend
  145. Third person agreement leveling
  146. Thou
  147. TOEFL
  148. TOEIC
  149. Truespel
  150. University of Cambridge ESOL examination
  151. Weak form and strong form
  152. Welsh English
  153. Who
  154. You

This article is from:

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List of English homographs

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Homographs are words that are spelled the same but have different meanings (and may or may not have different pronunciations). This list consists largely or exclusively of homographs that are pronounced differently, also known as heteronyms.

Note: BrE = British English, AmE = American English. When not given, the pronunciation is believed to be the same in both dialects.

  • abstract
    • /ˈæb.ˌstɹækt/ (a), (n)
    • /ˌæb.ˈstɹækt/ (v)
  • abuse
    • /əbˈjus/ (n) There is a time, when the hoary head of inveterate abuse will neither draw reverence, nor obtain protection.
    • /əbˈjuz/ (v) It is the characteristic of the English drunkard to abuse his wife and family.
  • address
    • AmE and BrE /ə.ˈdrɛs/ (v)
    • AmE /ˈæ.drɛs/ BrE /ə.ˈdrɛs/ (n)
  • allied
    • /əˈlaɪd/ (a) The vice is of a great kindred: it is well allied.
    • /ˈælaɪd/ (a) The Treaty of Vienna..had bound the Allied Powers to make war together upon Napoleon.
  • ally
    • /ˈælaɪ/ (n) He became the ally of a boy named Aubrey Mills and founded with him a gang of adventurers in the avenue.
    • /əˈlaɪ/ (v) No foreign power will ally with us.
  • articulate
    • /ɑɹˈtɪkjəˌleɪt/ (v) The tourists are the ones who always try to articulate every syllable when they speak the language.
    • /ɑɹˈtɪkjələt/ (a) In one decade, the image of youth went from radicals uttering rage-filled rhetoric to the much less articulate valley girl or surfer wannabe.
  • axes
    • /ˈæk.səz/ (v) The lumberjack axes the trees to the ground. (third-person singular simple present of to axe/ax)
    • /ˈæk.səz/ (n) I cut down the tree with two axes. (plural of axe/ax)
    • /ˈæk.siz/ (n) The x and y axes intersect at (0,0). (plural of axis)
  • ay/aye
    • /ɑɪ/ (adv) He voted aye on the legislation he had sponsored.
    • /eɪ/ (adv) They vowed their undying love for aye.
  • bass
    • /beɪs/ (n) Joey auditioned for the band while it was seeking someone to play bass.
    • /bæs/ (n) The store was selling an animatronic bigmouth bass that would open its mouth and sing "Take Me to the River" whenever someone passed by.
  • bow
    • /baʊ/ (v) Satoshi always made sure to bow before the emperor.
    • /boʊ/ (n) The hordes of warriors making their way through the forest fought with bow and arrow.
  • buffet
    • AmE /bəˈfeɪ/ BrE /ˈbʌ.feɪ/ (n) Steamed clams, prawns in mustard sauce and barbecued lamb with cilantro sat at the left edge of the buffet table.
    • /ˈbʌfət/ (v) It takes a catastrophe every now and then to buffet the nation out of its laziness and complacency.
  • celtic
    • /ˈkɛltək/ (n, atrributive) The bagpipers, three in number, screamed, during the whole time of dinner, a tremendous war-tune; and the echoing of the vaulted roof, and clang of the Celtic tongue, produced such a Babel of noises, that Waverley dreaded his ears would never recover it. (Walter Scott, Waverley)
    • /ˈsɛltək/ (pn) The Celtics never recovered from a second-quarter slump and never moved the ball well enough to generate consistent offense. (Shira Springer, "Celtics are left in dust", Boston Globe April 18, 2004)
  • close
    • /kloʊz/ (v) Cliff still has to close his eyes to be able to eat calamari.
    • /kloʊs/ (a) It seemed that the story in the newspaper had hit a little too close to home.
  • concert
    • AmE /'kɑn.sɚt/ BrE /ˈkɒn.sət/ (n)
    • AmE /kən.ˈsɝt/ BrE /kən.ˈsɜt/ (v)
  • confines
    • /ˈkɒn.fɑɪnz/ (n pl)
    • /kən.ˈfɑɪnz/ (v)
  • conflict
    • /ˈkɒn.flɪkt/ (n) The mother said to her belligerent son, "Violence is no way to resolve conflict!"
    • /kən.ˈflɪkt/ (v) The two news reports seem to conflict each other.
  • console
    • AmE /'kɑn.soʊl/ BrE /ˈkɒn.səʊl/ (n) The boy was addicted to playing on his video game console.
    • AmE /kən.ˈsoʊl/ BrE /kən.ˈsəʊl/ (v) Since they had raised him from birth, Jack and Jill had to console each other after their dog died.
  • contract
    • /ˈkɑntɹækt/ (n) The contract was supposed to expire seven years after it was signed.
    • /kənˈtɹækt/ (v) Derek firmly stated that he would rather contract pneumonia and die than stand outside wearing that ridiculous pink and green poncho.
  • coop
    • /kup/ (n)
    • AmE /koʊ.ɑp/ BrE /kəʊ.ɒp/ (n) also co-op
  • crooked
    • /kɹʊkt/
    • /ˌkɹʊkəd/
  • des
    • /də/
    • /deɪ/
    • /dɛz/
  • desert
    • /də.ˈzɝt/ (v) To desert the military is a crime.
    • /ˈdɛ.zɚt/ (n) The Gobi is a large desert in Asia.
  • discard
    • AmE /ˈdɪs.kɑɹd/ BrE /ˈdɪs.kɑːd/
    • AmE /dɪs.ˈkɑɹd/ /BrE /dɪs.ˈkɑːd/
  • do
    • /du/, /də/ (v) What do you think you are doing?
    • /doʊ/ (n) To warm-up, the singer sang the scale from do.
  • dos
    • /duz/
    • /doʊs/
  • does
    • /dʌz/ (v) When someone does something right it does not make headlines, but when someone does something wrong it does.
    • /doʊz/ (n) Even during hunting season, the hunters are required by law only to shoot the bucks and not the does.
  • dogged
    • /dɔgd/ (v) At night proctors patrolled the street and dogged your steps if you tried to go into any haunt where the presence of vice was suspected. (Samuel Butler, The Way of All Flesh)
    • /ˈdɔgəd/ (a) Still, the dogged obstinacy of his race held him to the pace he had set, and would hold him till he dropped in his tracks. (Jack London, The Son of the Wolf)
  • dove
    • /dʌv/ (n) The dove is a kind of bird.
    • /doʊv/ (v) He dove into the pool. (BrE uses "dived" instead)
  • ellipses
    • ? (n) The orbits of planets are ellipses. (plural of ellipse)
    • ? (n) I use ellipses to denote ommissions in quotations. (plural of ellipsis)
  • en
    • /ɑn/ (prep) Steve suffered a massive heart attack en route to the Cypress Hill concert.
    • /ɛn/ (attributive) When the editor transferred the article on the Internet from blog to newspaper, he had to change several improperly used en dashes to em dashes and fix up the semicolons here and there.
  • grace
    • /gɹeɪs/ (n) Janice new exactly what was coming up when Clay started in on another one of his long expositions on how we had all fallen from grace and needed Jesus' love to save us.
    • /gɹɑs/ or /gɹɑ/ (n) When Sen. Hutton had not only stumped his challenger in the debate but displayed a photograph revealing him as a wife-swapping hypocrite, that was the coup de grace.
  • house
    • /haʊs/ (n) "Jane, Jane, the house is on fire!" (Edward P. Roe, He Fell In Love With His Wife)
    • /haʊz/ (v) If a slave could escape to the swamps or the forest and elude the bloodhounds on his track, he knew that at certain points he would find those who were prepared to house him, and, passing him on secretly from station to station, ensure his arrival at a terminus where he would be safe for life. (Walter Hawkins, Old John Brown)
  • incense
    • /ˈɪn.sɛns/ (n)
    • /ɪn.ˈsɛns/ (v)
  • lead
    • /lɛd/ (n) Water traveled through ancient Rome through lead pipes.
    • /lid/ (v) The mother duck can lead her ducklings around.
  • lima
    • /ˈlaɪmə/ (attributive) The kids on You Can't Do That on Television always dreaded being served liver and lima beans for dinner.
    • /ˈlimə/ (pn) Sancho rode his donkey through the mountains of Lima.
  • live
    • /lɪv/ (v) I don't need you to determine whether I live or die.
    • /laɪv/ (a) I went to see Alanis Morissette live in concert.
  • minute
    • /ˈmɪnət/ (n) The guests are going to start flooding in any minute now.
    • /maɪˈnut/ (a) When I remarked, unable to understand why she was fretting over buying a pair of shoes, that the sandals all looked the same color to me, Tiffany started explaining to me the minute differences between umber, burnt umber and terracotta.
  • mobile
    • AmE /ˈmoʊˌbil/ BrE /ˈməʊbaɪl/ (n) The baby sat in awe at the bright colors on the mobile.
    • /ˈmoʊbəl/ BrE /ˈməʊbaɪl/ (a) Although most animals are mobile, the sponge is sessile.
    • /ˈmoʊˌbil/ (pn) They packed up their trailer and moved from Auburn to Mobile.
  • moped
    • /moʊpt/ (v) Depressed, he moped around the house for days.
    • /ˈmoʊˌpɛd/ (n) She drove her new moped to school.
  • number
    • /ˈnʌm.bɚ/ (n) What is your phone number?
    • /ˈnʌ.mɚ/ (a) My cold toes were number than hers. (comparative of numb)
  • oblige
    • /əˈblaɪdʒd/
    • /oʊˈbkiʒ/
  • overall
    • /ˈoʊvɚɔl/
    • /oʊvɚˈɔl/
  • polish
    • AmE /ˈpɑ.ləʃ/ BrE /ˈpɒ.lɪʃ/
    • AmE /ˈpoʊ.ləʃ/ BrE /ˈpəʊ.lɪʃ/
  • present
    • /ˈprɛ.zənt/ (a) All need to be present for a unanimous vote.
    • /ˈprɛ.zənt/ (n)
    • /prə.ˈzɛnt/ (v) He will present his ideas to the Board of Directors tomorrow.
  • primer
    • /ˈpɹaɪmɚ/
    • /'pɹɪmɚ/
  • produce
    • AmE /ˈproʊˌdus/ BrE /ˈprɒ.djuːs/ (n) The Americans only consume a small portion of this produce, and they are willing to sell us the rest. (Alexis de Tocqueville, American Institutions And Their Influence)
    • AmE /prəˈdus/ BrE /prəˈdjuːs/ (v) The judicial power is by its nature devoid of action; it must be put in motion in order to produce a result. (Alexis de Tocqueville, American Institutions And Their Influence)
  • putting
    • /ˈpʌtɪŋ/ (v) The final step in each hole in golf is putting the ball across the green into the cup.
    • /ˈpʊtɪŋ/ (v) She is putting on a show for you.
  • ragged
    • /ɹæɡd/
    • /ˈɹæɡəd/
  • read
    • /ɹid/ The new Jonathan Safran Foer book is an awful read.
    • /ɹɛd/ Once I had read the note I tore it into little bits and swallowed them.
  • real
    • /ɹil/
    • /ɹeɑl/
  • record
    • AmE /ˈrɛ.kɚd/ BrE /ˈrɛ.kɔːd/ (n) She played a vinyl record on her old turntable.
    • /rə.ˈkɔɹd/ BrE /rɪˈkɔːd/ (v) Did he record the concert with his camcorder?
  • refuse
    • /rə.ˈfjuz/ (v) If you refuse the background check, we cannot hire you.
    • /ˈrɛ.fjus/ (n) Please clean up all of your refuse.
  • resume
    • /ɹəˈzum/ Resume breathing or you will surely faint!
    • /ˈɹɛzəˌmeɪ/ My resume makes ample use of the font Impact. (however this may not be a true homograph since the latter form is sometimes spelled using a French e)
  • riches
    • /ˈɹɪtʃəz/ (n) The stranger was much pleased with the great number of shops full of merchandize, lighted up to the best advantage. He was astonished at the display of riches in Lombard-Street and Cheapside. (Tobias Smollett, Travels through France and Italy)
    • /ɹiʃ/ (n) (part of nouveau riches) Whatever is left of politics in this world of nouveau riches and nouveau Russes, is now spelled with a very small "p." (Gregory Freidin, "Moscow Nouveau: From the Barricades to Business", Los Angeles Times, August 21, 1994)
  • root
    • /ɹuːt/ (also, /ɹʊt/) (n) The tree's root was rotted.
    • /ɹuːt/ (v) A pig can be trained to root for mushrooms.
  • row
    • /ɹɑʊ/ The vicar and parson had an awful row at the tavern.
    • AmE /ɹoʊ/ BrE /ɹəʊ/ This is for the niggaz that was down from day one: welcome to death row.
  • separate
    • /ˈsɛpɹət/ (a) This should be divided into packets of ten cartridges each, which should be rolled up in flannel and hermetically sealed in separate tin canisters. (Samuel W. Baker, The Nile Tributaries of Abyssinia)
    • /ˈsɛpəˌɹeɪt/ (v) To stalk these wary antelopes I was obliged to separate from my party, who continued on their direct route. (Samuel W. Baker, The Nile Tributaries of Abyssinia)
  • sewer
    • /ˈsuwɚ/ (n) Broken sewer pipes can be a smelly mess.
    • /ˈsoʊwɚ/ (n) "We might choose the best sewers and let them put in at least a few stitches, so that they can feel they have a share in it." (Kate Douglas Wiggin, The Flag-Raising)
  • sow
    • /sɑʊ/ (n) The sow suckled her newborn piglets.
    • /soʊ/ (v) The farmer will sow oats in the back forty.
  • tear
    • /teɹ/ (v) and haven't they been ready to tear the clothes off my back too? (Henrik Ibsen, An Enemy of the People)
    • /tiɹ/ (n) Second, the greatest and last of the Hohenstaufen, or refrain from dropping a tear over his sad failure. (O. A. Brownson, The American Republic)
  • terrible
    • /ˈteɹəbəl/
    • /təˈɹiblə/
  • tier
    • /tiɹ/ (n) Our seats are in the third tier of the stadium.
    • /ˈtɑɪ.ɚ/ (n) Will the tier be around to make these knots?
  • use
    • /jus/
    • /juz/
  • vie
    • /vaɪ/
    • /vi/
  • voyage
    • /ˈvɔɪədʒ/
    • /vɔɪˈjɑʒ/
  • whoop
    • /wʊp/ Pa says he's gonna whoop you good if you don't learn some manners!
    • /wup/ Whoop! There it is.
  • wind
    • /waɪnd/ How did we wind up in Kansas?
    • /wɪnd/ The wind blew from the northeast.
  • won
    • /wʌn/
    • /wɑn/
  • wound
    • /waʊnd/ The rope was wound around his wrists.
    • /wund/ She died from a fatal chest wound.

Some words are nouns or adjectives when the accent is on the first syllable and verbs when it is on the second.

When the prefix "re-" is prepended to a monosyllabic word, and the word gains currency both as a noun and as a verb, it will probably fit into this pattern, although, as the list below makes clear, most words fitting this pattern do not match that description.

Other Homographs

Many of these have first syllables that evolved from Latin prepositions, although again that does not account for all of them. Also, some of these words only exhibit the stress alternation in certain varieties of English.

  • absent
  • affect
  • attribute
  • combine
  • commune
  • compact
  • compost
  • compound
  • compress
  • conduct
  • conscript
  • consort
  • construct
  • consult
  • content
  • contest
  • contract
  • contrast
  • converse
  • convert
  • convict
  • default
  • defect
  • digest
  • discharge
  • dismount
  • display
  • effect
  • entrance
  • exploit
  • extract
  • finance
  • impact
  • implant
  • import
  • impound
  • incline
  • increase
  • insert
  • insult
  • intercept
  • interchange
  • intrigue
  • invite
  • object
  • overcount
  • overlay
  • overlook
  • perfect
  • perfume
  • permit
  • pervert
  • proceeds
  • progress
  • project
  • protest
  • purpose
  • rebel
  • recall
  • recap
  • recess
  • redress
  • refund
  • regress
  • reject
  • relapse
  • remake
  • research
  • retake
  • retard
  • retract
  • rose
  • skied
  • subject
  • survey
  • suspect
  • transfer
  • transform
  • transplant
  • transport
  • transpose
  • undercount
  • update
  • uplift
  • upset

See also

  • Initial-stress-derived noun
  • List of commonly confused homonyms
  • List of homophones
  • List of common misspellings in English
  • List of frequently misused English words
  • List of heteronyms in Wikitionary

External links

  • Opundo's Homographs
  • The Heteronym Page
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    Iscritta al R.E.A. di Milano n.1478561 • Capitale Sociale
    10.400 interamente versato

    Roberto Casiraghi                                                                                Crystal Jones