A Grammar Challenge

Larry of “Larry’s Blog” left me with a grammatical challenge. He asked what words like “bow,” which have two different pronunciations as well as meanings with the same spelling, are called.

A homophone is a set of words that are pronounced the same but have different meanings. “To,” “too,” and “two” are all pronounced the same way, but each spelling carries a separate meaning.

After a little research, the best explanation I’ve found is that words like “minute,” which have different pronunciations (like “MY-NUTE” or “MIN-IT”) depending on how they’re used at the time, are called homographs.

Both homophones and homographs belong to a bigger category of words known as homonyms.

Ain’t grammar fun?

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 28 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.