This tag is for questions about the differences in the meaning of two words.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

6
votes
3answers
2k views

“Do it very quickly” vs “do it ASAP”

What is the difference between these phrases? Please, do it very quickly, since the deadline is approaching. and Please, do it ASAP, because the deadline is approaching.
3
votes
6answers
1k views

“More perfect” versus “less imperfect”

"More perfect" is presumably bad English (Preamble to the US Constitution notwithstanding), since something is either perfect (and thus can't be improved) or not. "Less imperfect", however, seems ...
10
votes
3answers
26k views

What's the difference between “egotism” and “egoism”?

I am interested in the difference between these two seemingly synonymous terms.
1
vote
2answers
4k views

Is it acceptable to say “more [adjective]” when there is already a dedicated form making “more” unnecessary (e.g. “angrier” vs. “more angry”)?

For years, it irritated me that people kept using "more [adjective]" where there were already dedicated forms making "more" unnecessary. For example, people would say "more tight" than "tighter". I ...
9
votes
4answers
21k views

Difference between “assent” and “consent”

What is the difference between assent and consent?
5
votes
4answers
794 views

Has “utilise” lost its meaning in America?

My understanding is that "utilise" means to use an object for a task for which it was not intended. However, in American English, it seems that "utilize" is synonymous with "use", and it seems that ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Difference between “impel” and “compel”

What is the difference between impel and compel?
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Difference between “the” and “that”

I wonder what the difference between the and that in this context is: A: Hey, I've heard we have a new printer. B: Really? Let's print the documents on the/that new printer then.
3
votes
4answers
7k views

What is the difference between “truthfully” and “honestly”?

These are different words, and their usage (context) differs substantially. How would you define them or explain the difference (if you believe there is one)?
12
votes
3answers
8k views

Difference between “each” and “every”

What is the difference between the following two sentences? Each apple is red. Every apple is red.
10
votes
3answers
40k views

What's the difference between “imbalance” and “unbalance”?

Is there a difference in usage between imbalance and unbalance as nouns? Specifically, we are designing a product where we measure three (3) related quantities continuously. These three quantities ...
1
vote
2answers
275 views

What's the difference between “shake up” and “shape up”?

What's the difference between these phrasal verbs? Would you say "organization shake up", "organization shape up", either depending on context and desired meaning or neither? How about "documentation" ...
2
votes
2answers
5k views

Difference between accounting, finance and budget [closed]

What's the difference between accounting, finance and budget? Are some of them included in the others?
15
votes
4answers
31k views

What are the important differences between Canadian and American (USA) English?

English is not my first language; the little English I know is mostly from the USA. I know some of the differences between British English (or just English?) and American English, and the same with ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Any differences between “slander” and “libel”?

Are there any differences between slander and libel?
0
votes
1answer
823 views

Difference between “Archival record” and “Archive reference”

How should an official document containing information about exams passed by a person in previous years be called? Are there any differences between "Archival record" and "Archive reference" in the ...
2
votes
4answers
634 views

How is an “assault” different from “battery” in everyday English?

In legal parlance, the word "assault" historically means an attempted battery (battery being defined as below) or an intentional frightening of another person. No contact is necessary. On the other ...
27
votes
7answers
67k views

What is the difference between 'make decision' and 'take decision'?

What is the difference between make decision and take decision? When to use the one and when the other?
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Are there any differences between “supernatural” and “paranormal”?

Are there any differences between "supernatural" and "paranormal"?
8
votes
4answers
34k views

Are there any differences between “oval” and “ellipse”?

Are there any differences between "oval" and "ellipse"?
3
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the differences between 'incident', 'issue' and 'affair'?

What are the difference between incident, issue, and affair? How should one use them?
5
votes
3answers
1k views

What's the difference between 'china' and 'porcelain'?

What's the difference between 'china' and 'porcelain'?
9
votes
3answers
19k views

What's the difference between 'cutlery', 'silverware' and 'crockery'?

What's the difference between 'cutlery', 'silverware' and 'crockery'? Are there any differences between them?
3
votes
3answers
9k views

Present Progressive or Present Continuous?

What is the correct term used to describe this tense in English — Present Progressive or Present Continuous? I see both terms used in grammar books.
11
votes
4answers
22k views

What's the difference between the words “plate” and “dish”?

I'm confused about the words dish and plate. Could someone please explain the difference?
3
votes
2answers
397 views

What is the difference between ‘Hot Corned Beef’ and ‘“Hot” Corned Beef’?

I have seen the phrase '"Hot" Corned Beef' on several convenience store signs in my area. Since corned beef is is usually served warm or hot, am I missing part of the meaning of the sign?
2
votes
3answers
473 views

“Brusque” vs. “curt”

What is the diffence between brusque and curt?
2
votes
1answer
146 views

“Inconsequent” and “inconsequential”

What is the difference between "inconsequent" and "inconsequential"?
5
votes
7answers
17k views

What is the difference between “probably” and “possibly”? [closed]

Recently I saw the movie "Pursuit of Happyness", which is actually quite good, and I noticed the actor (Will Smith) asking the difference between probably and possibly to his son. So I would like to ...
10
votes
3answers
4k views

What's the difference between “rock” and “stone”?

What's the difference between "rock" and "stone"?
10
votes
5answers
17k views

When would you say “woods”, and when would you say “forest”?

Is there any difference here at all?
5
votes
4answers
3k views

What is the difference between “horrify” and “terrify”?

When would I use one, versus using the other?
8
votes
2answers
452 views

Yellow versus orange

I have observed several people over the years refer to something that is orange in color as "yellow". Is that some linguistic difference or a difference in perception?
19
votes
5answers
32k views

“Electronic” vs. “electric”

Most people would refer to computers as being electronic, whereas a flashlight would be described as electric. I know the general difference (electronic devices use transistors?), but what is it ...
27
votes
3answers
22k views

Is it “despite” or “despite of”?

Should I always use 'despite' instead of 'despite of'?
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the difference between “onerous” and “arduous”?

Is there any difference in the meaning of these words? Which one of them is used the most in everyday conversation? In my vocabulary for both words I've found essentially the same meaning: "difficult ...
20
votes
4answers
2k views

Transform or transformation?

Is there a difference between the words transform (noun) and transformation? Let me describe my problem. I have a mathematical model which I can transform into a better model with help of a data ...
4
votes
5answers
7k views

What's the difference between Media and Press

What's the difference between Media and Press, I think that press for newspapers and media for TV, can anyone give us details about that?
51
votes
7answers
20k views

Which is the correct spelling: “grey” or “gray”?

What is the difference? Or is there any? Which would be more British English?
5
votes
1answer
21k views

What are the differences between “allegories”, “fables” and “parables”?

My concept of the three is: Allegory: A story in which ideas are symbolized as people. Parable: A short story designed to teach a moral or religious lesson. Fable: A short story in which animals or ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

How is “admire” used in “to admire them a great deal”?

I knew that admire can be used in phrases like "admire somebody" or "admire somebody for something", but recently I have found the following sentence in my Collins dictionary: If you emulate ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What's the difference between “hence” and “thus”?

Can anyone explain the difference between hence and thus and when should we use one and not the other?
21
votes
3answers
5k views

When should you write “answer” versus “response”?

In context, when would it be appropriate to use "answer" or "response"? I always tend to use "answer" personally, but I have always this nagging feeling I could be wrong.
15
votes
5answers
20k views

Difference between “should” and “ought to”

What is the difference between You should go and You ought to go? I rarely use the latter.
8
votes
4answers
3k views

“Just” versus “simply”

To which extent is just interchangeable with simply, as in the example? It's becoming more than just annoying. It's becoming more than simply annoying. Is just synonym of simply in just any ...
9
votes
3answers
50k views

“Give up” versus “give in”

Do give up and give in imply different meanings?
3
votes
3answers
13k views

“It could/might/may be funny” — what is the correct usage?

What is the difference in meaning in these three sentences? it might be funny it could be funny it may be funny The answer was partially touched on in this post.
8
votes
6answers
15k views

What is the difference between “to oblige” and “to obligate”?

What's the difference between oblige and obligate? Speculating, is the latter an Americanism of the British former? Or is there any distinction about what/who has caused someone to be oblig(at)ed to ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a real difference between wait and await?

In the context of the discussion in this blog post and comments on using await as a keyword for a potentially asynchronous operation in C#5, I wondered if there is any real difference between await ...
27
votes
5answers
31k views

Is there a difference between “arse” and “ass”?

From a comment here, in frequent usage, arse and ass are often interchangeable when used to refer to buttocks or to a person of dubious charms. However, although “to arse about” has a vague connection ...