Here’s a fun one. While researching the meanings of homophones, homonyms, homographs and such, I came across the word oronym.
Until I discovered it I had no idea there was such a name for a concept I was more than familiar with. Given the way the English language is structured and spoken, it should have come as no surprise.
The English language is a minefield where spelling and pronunciation are concerned. It’s no wonder it’s one of the most difficult languages to learn.
We have words that are spelt the same or pronounced the same but have different meanings (homonym) and words that are spelt differently but pronounced the same and have different meanings (homophone).
Just to recap here:
Homonym = Two or more words spelt the same or pronounced the same but having different meanings.
Who’s versus Whose?
Homophones are sound-alike words. They are spelt differently but sound the same.
Each word has a distinct meaning. If in doubt consult your dictionary or style book. A good proofreader will pick up mistakes such as these but it’s best to get it right in the first place.
So, when do you use who’s and when do you use whose and how do you remember which is which? Continue reading