He missed out several important facts. He omitted several important facts.

I think these two sentences are the same meaning. Is there a slight difference?

A few days ago, an American native speaker explained to me that "omit" means intentionally take out whereas "miss out" means mistakenly take out. Is it true?

Could anyone clarify the difference to me?

closed as off-topic by RegDwigнt Dec 8 '15 at 16:08

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  • Could you add in what you found when you looked up these words in a couple of dictionaries, please -- so that others don't repeat your own research and tell you what you already know. – Andrew Leach Dec 8 '15 at 15:48
  • 1
    Broadly, I'd agree with the native speaker. Compare these: (1) When I made the list of possible speakers, I omitted Fred because I knew he'd be abroad, (2) My internet was down, so I missed out on the chance to get tickets for the Killers. The 'omit' is deliberate, the 'missed' was due to external circumstances. [You could just say 'missed the chance', which is neater.] – David Garner Dec 8 '15 at 15:59
  • So you got your answer. From a person you know. But for reasons unspecified you don't believe them. You could also use a dictionary, but for some reason you didn't, either. Instead you're asking a random bunch of anonymous strangers off the Internet. If we say the same thing, you've already demonstrated that you won't believe us. If we say the exact opposite thing, it makes no sense at all for you to believe us random Internet users over someone you know in person. And in either case, "he missed out several facts" is not English to begin with. You probably mean "he left out several facts". – RegDwigнt Dec 8 '15 at 16:13

One would say, "He missed several important facts," or "He left out several important facts," or "He omitted several important facts," but not "He missed out several important facts."

The first implies he overlooked them; i. e., that his omission wasn't intentional.

The second doesn't question his intention directly; however, it begins an argument that perhaps his research wasn't sufficiently complete.

The third implies he intentionally left out some important facts.

"Missed out" is usually followed by "on" (the beginning of a prepositional phrase); for example, "He missed out on the opportunity to include additional important facts."

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