This was presented to me years ago and I've not gotten what I consider a definitively right answer. I'm looking for the word that would go in the brackets in this sentence:

There are three common ways to spell the word [to, too, two].

The issue is that none of the three spellings seem to be appropriate. You can say the sentence easily enough because all spellings sound the same, but how would you write it?

  • 1
    Why, "There are three ways to pronounce the word /tu/", of course. – Dan Bron Sep 30 '15 at 18:52
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    They are three words, not one. – TRomano Sep 30 '15 at 18:59
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    You may reformulate your wording, i.e. by writing that "to", "too" and "two" are three homophones. – Graffito Sep 30 '15 at 19:07

I'd support the comment above. The final part of the sentence :

the word [to, too, two] 

is wrong as these are three different words instead of one.


You can't say "the word [to, two, too]" because it's three words, not one. They just all have the same sound.

Therefore, perhaps something like "There are three common ways to spell the sound 'to'."

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