Homophones - Words with a Similar Sound

The list below provides some common homophones and it is sorted by grade level.

Technically, all or most of these words are heterographs and some are synophones. Heterographs should be mastered because one might choose the wrong word when typing a document (and assuming the software's automated spell checker will not catch the error).

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Lower-Mid Grades:
ate - eight
be - bee
bare - bear
beach - beech
by - buy
bin - been
blew - blue
board - bored
capital - capitol
cell - sell
dear - deer
dew - due
dye - die
for - four
fair - fare
forth - fourth
great - grate
herd - heard
hole - whole
hour - our
its - it's
know - no
led - lead
lone - loan
made - maid
might - mite
meet - meat
mail - male
night - knight
ore - or - oar
one - won
pair - pare - pear
pail - pale
pain - pane
piece - peace
plane - plain
read - reed
real - reel
right - write
road - rode
see  sea
sew - so
some - sum
son - sun
steel - steal
their - they're - there
to - too - two
vain - vein - vane
waist - waste
week - weak
2which - witch
would - wood
your - you're




Upper Grades:
accent - ascent - assent
accept - except
advice - advise
affect - effect
allowed - aloud
3allusion - illusion
ask - asked
aught - ought
baring - barring - bearing
berth - birth
breath - breathe
buy - by
capitol - capital
cite - sight - site
close - cloths - clothes
coarse - course
complement - compliment
conscience - conscious
corps - corpse
council - counsel - consul
decent - descend - descent
desert - dessert
dual - duel
dyeing - dying
formally - formerly
here - hear
holy - wholly

instants - instance
irrelevant - irreverent
lessen - lesson
loath - loathe
loose - lose
mine - mind
of - off
passed - past
1precede - proceed
presents - presence
principal - principle
prophecy - prophesy
quite - quiet
reverend - reverent
right - Wright - write
sense - since
shone - shown
staid - stayed
stationary - stationery
straight - strait
than - then
their - they're - their
threw - through
till - until
to - too - two
weather - whether
whose - who's
your - you're

Synophones, but who's nit-picking

1. The words precede - proceed are not actually homophones if one pronouces the words correctly. Pre in precede has a long e sound while pro in proceed has a schwa sound. These words are technically synophones.

2. The words which - witch are not actually homophones if one pronouces the words correctly. Be certain to pronoun the h sound in which -- hwich. These words are technically synophones.

3. The words allusion - illusion are not actually homophones if one pronouces the words correctly. Allusion begins with a schwa sound of the letter a while illusion begins with the short sound of the letter i. These words are technically synophones.

4. The words formally - formerly are not actually homophones if one pronouces the words correctly. Formally does not contain an r in the second syllable; however, that is not the problem. The word formerly CONTAINS the letter r in the second sylable that one should not neglect when saying the word.

Related Table

This table is from the wikipedia Homonym entry that is at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homonym

Term Meaning Spelling Pronunciation
Homonym Different Same Same
Homograph Different Same Same or different
Homophone Different Same or different Same
Heteronym Different Same Different
Heterograph Different Different Same
Polyseme Different but related Same Same or different
Capitonym Different when
capitalized
Same except for
capitalization
Same or different
Synonym Same Different Different
Synophone Different Different Similar but not identical
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