Confusing Words Clarified: Group E; Homonyms, Homophones, Homographs, Synonyms, Polysemes, etc. +

(lists of "E" sections that are organized into what for some people are confusing groups of words)

All of the main entries in these "Confusing Words" groups are explained, or defined, followed by pronunciations, and sentences which are meant to enhance your understanding of their meanings.

The definitions provided are based on dictionary presentations and are meant to help you differentiate between the various meanings of each word group.

Many current dictionaries, popular writing books, specialized topical resources, and style guides were consulted for these groups so you can develop better word skills and communication tools.

In your daily writing, be aware of what the "right words are for the correct meanings" so you can improve your writing accuracy in a positive way.

A great deal of effort has been devoted to help you grasp the meanings of over 1,700 word groups (or more than 5,100 entry words in the sections) which may be confusing to you so you can utilize them with greater accuracy in your communications.

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If you have any problems understanding the pronunciation symbols, go to this Pronunciation Chart for clarifications.

everyone, every one
everyone (EV ree wun") (pronoun)
An inclusive word referring to every person or individual: The invitation to the fete was issued to everyone in the village.
every one (EV ree wun") (pronoun)
Every individual without exception: The children noticed that each and every one of the kittens had blue eyes.

Every one of Jodie's six siblings was in school at the same time and everyone received a special certificate of good attendance.

everything, every thing
everything (EV ree thing") (pronoun)
Inclusive of all that relates to a subject or topic: Emery wanted to know everything about the butterflies in the garden.
every thing (EV ree thing") (pronoun)
Every single or individual object: Cathleen and Angelia were told to do every thing listed on their schedule and not to miss one item.

Every thing that Colby discussed with the gardener confirmed Lacey's suspicions that he knew everything about growing flowers.

evils, weevils
evils (EE vuhlz) (noun)
1. Things that are morally bad or wrong; wickedness: Why are there so many evils caused by people against others?
2. Things that are causes or sources of suffering, injuries, or destruction: The social evils of poverty and injustice still exist on a global scale.
weevils (WEE vuhlz) (noun)
Any of numerous beetles, especially the snout beetle, that characteristically have a downward-curving snout and are destructive to nuts, fruits, stems, and roots: The weevils practically destroyed most of the almond trees in the area last year.

As for evils, Vince is trying to eliminate the weevils in Elma's orchards.

evoke, invoke, revoke
evoke (i VOHK) (verb)
To summon, call forth, or recollect: Seeing the valley served to evoke strong memories of growing up in the mind of the tourist.
invoke (in VOHK) (verb)
To solicit or to request help or support: In ancient mythology, the priests would invoke the deities to protect the sailors on the seas.
revoke (ri VOHK) (verb)
To take back, to annul, or to recall: Richard's father decided to revoke his permission for the children to go swimming and so they went to the movies instead.

The city official had to invoke support from the fire department in order to carry out the order to revoke the parade permit. In the end, he also had to evoke an order from the mayor to cancel the parade.

evolution, revolution
evolution (ev" uh LOO shuhn) (noun)
Process of change, typically involving development from a less complex status to a more complex one: The evolution of childhood is marked by many opportunities for fun and learning.
revolution (rev" uh LOO shuhn) (noun)
1. An unexpected, fundamental, and radical change, often in relation to a political context: The student uprising or revolution on the university campus surprised everyone.
2. A measure of time for a celestial body to complete the orbit around its axis: The approximate revolution of the earth around the sun is 365 days.

The theory of evolution caused a revolution in the way people understood the laws of natural history.

evolve, devolve
evolve (i VOLV) (verb)
To produce by natural change and development: The expectations of the residents of the city in terms of services usually mature or evolve over time.
devolve (di VOLV) (verb)
To change the power and authority from a central power or governing body to that of a more local center: The corporation decided to devolve the control of sales from the head office to the local authorities.

It seemed to be a natural process that the authority in the board would evolve to a more democratic process; in fact, it was decided to devolve the power of the board completely in favor of a citizen committee.

exalt, exult
exalt (ig ZAWLT) (verb)
1. To glorify and to praise: The songs they sang each morning served to exalt the beauty of the day.
2. To raise in rank, character, or status: Delmar's reputation for good works will exalt his character in the eyes of his neighbors.
exult (ig ZULT) (verb)
To be in high spirits or to rejoice greatly: Katy could only exult at the good news from her publisher.

The decision to exalt the memory of the former mayor for her contribution to the community caused many of the older citizens to exult about the power and influence of senior citizens.

exceed, excel
exceed (ik SEED) (verb)
To go beyond typically established guidelines or restrictions: Suddenly Jeremy noticed that he was about to exceed the speed limit near the school.
excel (ik SEL) (verb)
To surpass, to be superior in achievement: The twins appeared to excel more when they were singing together than when they sang solo.

If Sheema can excel in spelling and grammatical accuracy, she will exceed all expectations regarding her written essay.

exceptionable, exceptional
exceptionable (ik SEP shuh nuh buhl) (adjective)
Describing something liable to be objectionable or offensive: The teachers attempted to censor the disgusting or exceptionable passages in the new novel assigned to the students.
exceptional (ik SEP shuh nuhl) (adjective)
Pertaining to a condition differing from the norm, either better than average or worse than average: There was an exceptional amount of rain in the summer and, as a result, the rivers ran very high.

The exceptional remark made by the politician was deemed exceptionable by the electoral committee.

excerpt, excerpt, extract, extract
excerpt (EK surpt") (noun)
A carefully selected literary passage, usually small or short: As part of her speech to the doctors, the nurse read an excerpt from her medical text.
excerpt (EK surpt") (verb)
To extract, to select, to take out, or to quote passages from a book, etc.: When you decide to excerpt a passage from a text, be sure to credit it properly; otherwise, you might be accused of plagiarism.
extract (ik STRAKT) (noun)
Usually a large selection from a literary passage: Nola's job was to write the extract from the exciting new novel for the book review.
extract (ik STRAKT) (verb)
1. To pull something out: While the dentist was working to extract Selma's tooth, he was also trying to extract information about the new concert series at the symphony from her.
2. To obtain information from someone who is reluctant to provide anything: Maxwell's aunt tried to acquire or extract information from the police for her new novel, but she wasn't successful.

The extract which Haley prepared for the newspaper contained an especially touching excerpt from a famous novel.

exclusive, inclusive
exclusive (ik SKLOO siv) (adjective)
Concerning a restricted limited use or possession by a small group and/or individuals: The tennis court appeared to be for the exclusive use by the members of the private club.
inclusive (in KLOO sive) (adjective)
1. Descriptive of something which covers or includes everything: The bill submitted to the accountant was inclusive, not leaving out a single item.
2. Regarding something that is open to everyone; not limited to certain people: Clarice joined the inclusive club because she wanted to meet all kinds of people from various cultures.

The policy regarding the exclusive use of certain words in the newspaper was changed to make the paper seem more inclusive and reflective of the general population of the city.

exercise, exercise, exorcise
exercise (EK suhr sighz") (verb)
1. To train; to work out; to keep fit: Christi attempted to go to the gymnasium daily to exercise so she would be ready to run the marathon.
2. To carry out an official function or duty: Gavin will exercise his responsibilities as vice president to the best of his ability.
exercise (EK suhr sighz") (noun)
Physical activity typically with a focus; for example, building great abs or any activity carried out with a purpose such as learning a new language: Exercise in the gym is one way to build up your body, but people need to exercise with caution and use the equipment appropriately.
exorcise (EK sor sighz" EKS or sighz") (verb)
To free or to get rid of something that is perceived as evil or difficult: Irwin joined the freedom march as a way to exorcise himself from feeling guilty about his ancestors.

The novel was about a priest who tried to exorcise demons from a young man and his sister.

As an exercise of his authority as mayor, Sandford had to arrange for a shaman to come to his town to exorcise the evil spirits that were believed to haunt the community.

exhaustible, exhausting, exhaustive
exhaustible (ig ZOST i buhl) (adjective)
Descriptive of those characteristics that suggest a depletion or using up of reserves: Timber is an exhaustible resource due to the lack of foresight by the lumber companies.
exhausting (ig ZOST ing) (adjective)
Characterizing something that uses all of one's mental or physical energy: Running the marathon is an exhausting activity.
exhausting (ig ZOST ing) (verb)
Completely using up something; such as, supplies or financial resources: Brock kept overspending until he finally realized that he was exhausting all of his money.
exhaustive (ig ZAW stiv) (adjective)
Pertaining to a thorough and complete study or consideration of information: To complete his degree, Weldon undertook an exhaustive study of the use of the printing press over the decades.

It was exhausting to complete the exhaustive study of the exhaustible resources of the region.

exhort, export, extort
exhort (ig ZORT) (verb)
To raise interest in something by strong argument or urging: The student leader attempted to exhort his friends to march to the government buildings.
export (ik SPORT, ik SPOHRT, EK sport", EK spohrt") (verb)
To arrange for and to send goods or ideas from one location to another one: The people were proud to be able to export their grain crops to poor countries.
extort (ik STORT) (verb)
To obtain something through intimidation or illegal power: The courts realized that the gangster had tried to extort money from the business owners.

The president of the union tried to exhort his members to boycott the export of expensive products. It was believed that the politicians were trying to extort the union president for their own means.

expand, expend
expand (ik SPAND) (verb)
1. To spread out, open out, stretch out: Justine stood on the lawn to expand her arms as if to embrace the whole world.
2. To make greater in size: Denny used a special tool to expand, or widen, the width of the pipe.
expend (ik SPEND) (verb)
1. To spend or to use something: When running, try not to expend all your energy in the first few minutes.
2. To use time, energy, effort, etc. for a particular purpose or objective: Weldon must be willing to expend the time and resources required to complete this project.

Cathleen agreed to expend her personal resources in an effort to expand the prospects of her company.

Pointing to explanation of homonyms, homophones, and homographs, etc. Confusing Words: Homonyms, Homophones, and Homographs; explained and demonstrated.

Pointing back to Confusing Words Quizzes, Part AConfusing Words: Units, Groups A to Z.