Homophones

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I can see the sea from my window.

 

Homophones are words that are pronounced the same, but are spelt differently and have different meanings.

From Greek homóphõnos (homo same – phõné sound)

 

Examples:

band (/band/) – My daughter plays bass guitar in a band.

banned – He’s been banned from driving for a year.

 

blue (/bluː/) – My favourite colour is blue.

blew – The wind blew my shed down.


coarse (/kɔːs/) – My dog has very thick, coarse fur.

course – Your English course starts in September.

 

flour (/ˈflaʊə/) – You can make pizza dough by mixing flour, yeast, olive oil, salt, and water.

flower – My grandmother’s favourite flower is the rose.


genes (/dʒiːn/) – You have thousands of different genes in every cell in your body.

jeans – I’m wearing my favourite jeans today.


heal (/hiːl/) – It’s only a small cut and it will heal quickly.

heel – My new boots have made a blister on my heel.

he’ll – He’ll meet you in the car park at 7 o’clock.


know (/nəʊ/) – I don’t know your name.

no – No thank you.


meat (/miːt/) – I don’t eat meat.

meet – We’ll meet you after work.


morning (/ˈmɔːnɪŋ/) – Good morning!

mourning – She is in mourning because her husband died last week.

 

sale (/seɪl/) – My neighbour’s house is for sale.

sail – Their yacht has a yellow sail.


sauce (/sɔːs/) – I love tomato sauce with everything!

source – The BBC is a popular news source.


sea (/siː/) – I live by the sea.

see – I can see the sea from my window.

 

so (/səʊ/) – It’s so hot in here!

sew – I need to sew this button back on my coat.

sow – You can sow cauliflower seeds in autumn and winter.


their (/ðɛː/) – Their car is blue.

there – It’s parked over there.

they’re – They’re going to buy a new car soon.


threw (/θruː/) – She threw the ball for the dog.

through – She threw the ball through the window.


to (/tuː/) – We’re going to the cinema.

too – Do you want to come too?

two – We have two spare tickets.


your (/jɔː, jʊə/) – Your breakfast is ready.

you’re – You’re late for school.


There are many varieties of English, and words may be homophones in one variety of English but not in another.

Examples:

father / farther and for / four are homophones in Received Pronunciation (RP), but not in American English and Scottish English.

whether / weather are homophones in England, but not in Scotland.


Can you suggest some more homophones?

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Angela Boothroyd
Hi, thank you for visiting this site - I hope you've found useful content here. For more information about the site etc, please see my About page and my manifesto. I'm also The Botanical Linguist and you can find me on the brand new Botanical Linguist site.
Angela Boothroyd
Angela Boothroyd

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Comments

  1. brendan says

    Can we say that sauce and source are also not homophones in US and Scottish English (nor in Irish or West Country accents)?

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