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

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9
votes
1answer
23k views

What is the difference between “in-between” and “between”?

Do in-between and between have different meanings? What is the difference between in-between and between?
9
votes
3answers
8k views

Difference between “packet”, “parcel” and “package”

The definition on OALD is identical for parcel and packet. parcel (especially British English) (North American English usually package) something that is wrapped in paper or put into a thick ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there any difference between “switch” and “swap”?

Is there any difference between switch and swap?
9
votes
3answers
10k views

“Often” and “oftentimes”

Is there any difference between the two terms 'often' and 'oftentimes'? They seem to be used interchangeably but is one more appropriate in certain situations than others? Is 'oftentimes' an older ...
9
votes
2answers
9k views

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

I am interested in the difference between these to seemingly synonymous terms.
9
votes
2answers
11k views

“Chalice” vs. “goblet”

Is there a difference between chalice and goblet, other than (maybe) religious connotations on the word chalice?
9
votes
2answers
8k views

What is the difference between a “stanza” and a “verse”, as applied to English literature?

What is the difference between 'stanza' and 'verse' in English Literature (Poetry)? I've read one of my classmate's essays and the word 'verse' cropped up - I thought that the word 'verse' was usually ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Is it absolutely necessary to use “than” over “then” in a comparison?

Do you think you are smarter then me? While this question should be using than...I have to wonder if this is a debatable topic within English or is this cut and dry? If this specific instance is ...
8
votes
4answers
18k views

What's the difference between “yet another” and “another”?

What's the difference between yet another and another?
8
votes
4answers
503 views

Is lolspeak bad English, or just a different English?

Is lolspeak / internet speak (such as "plz send teh codez") bad English, or a different English? I can't really describe what'd be "bad", but a lack of consistency would be an indicator it's bad.
8
votes
4answers
387 views

“Dance macabre” or “macabre dance”

The role is the kind of high-wire dare certain types of actors and directors cannot resist. T. Scott Cunningham, who has created a number of lovable losers onstage in the last decade, lets the ...
8
votes
7answers
6k views

Is there any difference in meaning between “faith” and “blind faith”?

To use the term blind faith, is to use an adjective needlessly. I had heard the above quote from a positivist friend some time ago. Also, the dictionaries define "faith" as a "belief that is ...
8
votes
3answers
20k views

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

Are there any differences between "oval" and "ellipse"?
8
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the difference, if any, between 'porn' and 'porno'?

I had never thought of a potential difference between 'porn' and 'porno' until I encountered the following dialogue from Family Guy Season 9 Episode 9(thanks to FumbleFingers for reminding me the ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Difference between “impel” and “compel”

What is the difference between impel and compel?
8
votes
9answers
586 views
+100

Is there any difference between “a few relatives” and “a few relations”?

In the following sentence I prefer saying relatives but I am unable to explain why. It's going to be a small wedding. Only a few friends and relatives have been invited On doing research I ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Usage of “many” vs “many a”?

Can someone please elucidate the difference between "many" and "many a"? In what context of usage should we add an extra "a" beside the word "many"? For example: Many times, I had seen ...
8
votes
4answers
4k views

What are: province, territory, protectorate, state…?

Often a country will have regions called "provinces" or "states". Other times they are called "territories" and "protectorates". Is there a generic term for these words? Is there a full list of ...
8
votes
6answers
293 views

Word to describe pets that can be uncomfortable to live with?

I cannot figure out how to word this. I'm creating a rental system and have a question with regard to pets contained within a residence. But there are different types of pets. For example, a dog who ...
8
votes
4answers
14k views

“How about” vs. “What about”

Is there a difference between starting a question with "How about" and "What about"? Can we use both expressions interchangeably?
8
votes
5answers
24k views

What is the difference between 'can', 'could', 'may' and 'might'?

I'm a native English speaker and I've been doing some research into English grammar for a programme I'm working on. However, on looking into modal verbs, I've only just come to appreciate how subtle ...
8
votes
3answers
10k views

Difference between “classical” and “classic”

What's the difference between classical and classic? Should we say classic content in textbooks or classical content in textbooks?
8
votes
5answers
2k views

That which is vulgar, obscene, or profane (title reflects contents)

When I look up the word "fuck" in the dictionary, I see that it is listed as a vulgar term. However, if I use it in church, I might be scolded for speaking profanity in the Lord's house. If I use it ...
8
votes
3answers
681 views

What is the relationship between canon and cannon?

The spelling is similar and the meaning so different. Wiktionary indicates that there might be some relation by linking to canon from cannon but I didn't see any specific statements regarding their ...
8
votes
4answers
590 views

“Back up data” or “back data up”?

Which is correct? To back up data. To back data up. The context is the following: He was careful enough to perform tests and [back up data | back data up] to avoid any problems.
8
votes
5answers
993 views

Difference between “spirit” and “soul”

What is the difference between spirit and soul? Is the word soul used for only human beings? For instance, He [Descartes] thought the brain worked as a center for the spirits of the soul.
8
votes
4answers
2k views

What's up with all the words ending with “-eth” in the Bible? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What happened to the “-est” and “-eth” verb suffixes in English? How were they once used? With all this rapture thing going on now, I noticed ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the difference between “onetime” and “one time”?

I was reading a book that had a sentence containing this: ...onetime commissioner of New York...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

“Extract” v. “Extricate”

I was having a debate with my family about the differences between the usage of extract and extricate. For example, can one extricate a non-living item? Can one extricate a hair? We have heard of ...
8
votes
2answers
779 views

Is there a clear delineation between the usages of 'this' and 'that' in American English?

One of my linguistics professors speaks English as a second language, and remarked that she never knows which of the two is appropriate. Given a list of examples, all native speakers in the classroom ...
8
votes
2answers
360 views

Difference between “plotting” and “drawing”

What is the difference between plotting and drawing? I am a foreigner and I have been doing maths for years. Sometimes, I feel that difference but if someone suddenly asks me about it, I cannot ...
8
votes
5answers
13k views

What's the difference between “on the contrary” and “in contrast”

Is there any difference between these two phrases? Is there any context in which we only can use one rather than the other?
8
votes
3answers
6k views

Rule for using “for” vs. “to”

A Brazilian friend speaks English very well, but has a very unique habit: it seems often that she needs to use "for" but she instead uses "to", and vice-versa. For instance: The present is to ...
8
votes
6answers
8k views

“Experienced” vs. “seasoned”

Are these two words interchangeable? According to the Oxford dictionary, experienced means having knowledge or skill in a particular job or activity, while seasoned having a lot of experience in a ...
8
votes
4answers
41k views

Difference between “selfish” and “self-centered”

Is there a difference between the meaning of selfish and self-centered? I have seen some using them identically. If there is a difference who would you like to hang out with: a selfish person or a ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

What’s the difference between “line” and “row”?

I’m not exactly sure under which circumstances is line or row the more suitable term. In Portuguese, they both translate to the same word linha, which can be used for both a drawing line or for an ...
8
votes
2answers
59k views

'I get it' vs. 'I got it'

When someone tells me something, how should I respond, "I get it" or "I got it"? I have a feeling that "I got it" means "I already knew the thing before you told me," and "I get it" means "Now I know ...
8
votes
3answers
9k views

Difference between “choose” and “select”

These two words are often used interchangeably and the greatest difference I can find between the two is "choose" for choosing multiple items from a set, and "select" for selecting a single item from ...
8
votes
5answers
5k views

Differences between “price point” and “price”

Apart from its use among the bean-counters who talk about maximising company profits, I can't understand why price point has spread so widely in popular American parlance. As far as I can tell, the ...
8
votes
2answers
285 views

Difference between “Labyrinth” and “Maze”

I know the two are pretty much synonymous: labyrinth a complicated irregular network of passages or paths in which it is difficult to find one’s way; a maze maze a network of paths and ...
8
votes
4answers
6k views

What is the distinction between “role” and “rôle” [with a circumflex]?

One of our users, Stan Rogers, mentioned there was such a distinction, I think, when he answered a question and talked about how the orthography of foreign loan-words typically changes to conform with ...
8
votes
3answers
28k views

“Give up” versus “give in”

Do give up and give in imply different meanings?
8
votes
4answers
7k views

Is there any difference between 'often' and 'frequently'?

Do both mean exactly the same or do they have slightly different meanings?
8
votes
5answers
2k views

Difference between “scenery” and “landscape”

What's the difference between scenery and landscape? In what situations can I use them interchangeably? The scenery/landscape at the school is beautiful. Does landscape sound natural in the ...
8
votes
3answers
362 views

What is the difference between weight and heft?

There’s a dictionary saying heft means weight, but what does heft mean in the phrase of “weight and heft”? Is it "weight and weight"? I think there might be some difference between weight and heft, ...
8
votes
2answers
7k views

Differences between “propensity”, “predilection” and “proclivity”

Propensity, predilection and proclivity all have the meaning of tendency, so what's the difference? Are they interchangeable?
8
votes
5answers
13k views

What's the difference between a picture and an image?

What's the difference between a picture and an image? I think this is the missing question as these have already been asked: Picture/Photo Image/Glyph Photo/Image
8
votes
2answers
11k views

What's the difference between “apparel” and “clothing”?

Those two words seems referring to one thing.
8
votes
3answers
1k views

“Backward” versus “backwards” — is there any difference?

The dictionaries I've looked in don't distinguish between these two words, backward and backwards (at least when used as adverbs). Is there some real historical, grammatical or regional difference ...