"You should kill trolls on sight" "You should kill trolls on site" Which is correct? I'm not a native speaker, so I don't really have much intuition for these idioms, but semantically both seem to make sense. The first one means kill the troll when you see it (i.e. immediately), and the second one means kill the troll right where the troll is standing, on its site (i.e. immediately).

Which one is the correct version and which one is the eggcorn?

  • 3
    I don’t understand what you are asking here, if anything. Both sentences are perfectly correct, and neither is an eggcorn. As you say, they mean different things. If you are talking about killing the trolls where they are, use ‘on site’; if you are talking about killing them when you see them, use ‘on sight’. Commented Dec 8, 2013 at 19:06

2 Answers 2


"On sight" means upon seeing them. If you disapprove deeply of trolls, you might kill them on sight.

"On site" denotes on a specific location, e.g. a building site, a web site etc. If you disapprove of killing living things (even trolls), then you should definitely only kill them on fantasy sites.

Your statement, in plain English, would use on sight.



  • 1
    So you would only kill trolls on-sight on-site?
    – mgb
    Commented Dec 9, 2013 at 0:12

As you say, both phrases can make sense, but it's usually "on sight", i.e. when you first see them.

  • Eggcorns by definition make sense but are wrong. Which is correct?
    – ithisa
    Commented Dec 8, 2013 at 18:41
  • 5
    on sight. "On site" means "in-house", as in "on the premises", and is not used in that context. It's not wrong in a different context, though (perhaps not referring to trolls ...)
    – Ingmar
    Commented Dec 8, 2013 at 18:44

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