Confusing Words Clarified: Group C; Homonyms, Homophones, Homographs, Synonyms, Polysemes, etc.
(lists of "C" sections that are organized into what for some people are confusing groups of words)
Three words that every student of language should understand are homonyms, synonyms, and antonyms.
Homonyms are words that sound alike, but have different meanings. Synonyms are words that are related in meaning but do not sound alike (begin and commence, for example).
Antonyms are direct opposites in meaning, as hot and cold; white and black.
With homonyms, the following set of to, too, and two are all pronounced exactly alike, but by no means are they interchangeable in writing. To be sure that you choose the correct spelling for any on these, you must know the meanings of all three so you will not make wrong choices with a feeling of vagueness and uncertainty.
Efforts have been made to help you grasp the meanings of these and other words that may be confusing so you can utilize them with greater accuracy in your communication.
Your comments and suggestions are always welcome by writing to: E-mail Contact (just click it for an e-mail form) or by typing, email@example.com, as the address in your e-mail heading.
If you have any problems understanding the pronunciation symbols, go to this Pronunciation Chart for clarifications.
2. A machine for hoisting and moving heavy objects by means of cables attached to a movable boom: There were several cranes working on the construction of the new hotel.
There is a big difference between cranes that fly and cranes which are used for lifting and moving heavy materials despite the fact that both types are involved in the construction of something; for example, those that build nests and those which help in building various structures.
The dark crepe which Jean bought at the store will be used to make a crape to wear to the memorial service for her former boss.
2. In the fishing industry, a confined space in shallow water for such crops as lobster: The angling community protected the trout in the crawl from illegal fishers.
From the shore, people were watching the boat trawl for fish and it seemed to crawl at a slow pace probably because it was passing through a crawl for lobsters before moving into the open sea.
Down by the creek was an old house and Carlton noticed that when the door was opened, it seemed to creak as if it hadn't been opened in a long time.
The crease in Pete's trousers was as sharp as the blade of a creese or kris.
With the appearance of credulous behavior, Miranda told a credible story of the school competition during which the students gave a creditable performance of a mystery play which stretched the credulity of the audience.
The determined tree grew from the crevice of the rocks on the side of the mountain; however, further up there was a glacier and nothing could grow in its crevasse.
2. Personnel on two ships, or aircrafts, who assist in the operations of the crafts which may or may not include officers: Will both of the crews of the ships be ready to depart tomorrow?
2. To travel at a velocity providing the utmost operating efficiency for a sustained period: The bus will cruise at a maximum acceleration which is not in excess of the posted speed limit.
Groups of sailors on ocean ships that carry passengers are known as cruise crews.
There were several criteria for choosing a winner in the writing competition.
One criterion was that there be clarity of prose in the compositions.
2. A person who specializes especially professionally in the evaluation and appreciation of literary or artistic works: George Bernard Shaw worked as a theater critic before developing his drama writing career.
3. Someone who tends to make harsh or carping judgments; a faultfinder: According to an article in the paper, a mother-in-law is often described as a critic of the marriage partner of her child.
2. A crucial or decisive discussion of a specified topic: During the course of the dinner, they engaged in a wide ranging critique of the new policies at the university.
The critique of the concert appeared in the paper this morning under the by-line of the famous critic whose face in the picture at the top of the column was always obscured.
2. An old, ill, or unhappy person: Nadine's neighbor is an old crock who complains about everything.
The clerk at the bank who was such an offensive crock apparently croaked last week.
After we played a game of croquet on the lawn, we went into the restaurant and ordered a croquette for dinner.
Lucia was impressed with the decor at the restaurant because there was a beautiful piece of lace crochet work in the center of each table.
2. An area in the throat of some birds or insects; for example, ants, where food is stored for a time: An ant has a crop where liquid food can be stored and from which it can be passed on to nest mates by regurgitation.
A crop is a pouch-like enlargement of a bird's gullet in which food is partially digested or stored for regurgitation to nestlings.3. A short and thick quantity of hair on a person's head: Irvin has a thick crop of red, curly hair.
2. To cut off part of a picture or photograph: Gwen had to crop the photograph so it could fit into the frame.
Tom noticed in the photograph album that there was a photograph of the crop of barley from last year.
The picture was a panorama which someone had tried to crop to fit the page.
2. A mark or pattern formed by the intersection of two lines, especially such a mark (X) used as a signature: Because Mildred never went to school, she had not learned to write, so her name was represented by a careful cross on anything requiring her identification.
Meredith apologized and asked the clerk not to be cross with her because she injured her hand and she can only make a cross on the paper instead of her usual signature.
When Percy was lost in the woods, he stopped frequently to cry out or to shout for help. Apparently no one could hear him, so he started to cry because he was afraid he would never get out alive.