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

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

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

rapped, rapt, wrapped
rapped (RAPT) (verb)
To have caused a short, sharp blow or hit: The highway man rapped on the window with his crop to get the attention of the beautiful girl who was waiting for him.
rapt (RAPT) (adjective)
Referring to someone who is completely or wholly absorbed as in thought, or carried away with emotion: Adele listened to the singer with rapt attention, scarcely breathing.

Ron felt rapt and tearful when he listened to the dirge being played on bag pipes.

wrapped (RAPT) (verb)
1. To have put on clothing, typically to be warm: Trisha wrapped herself in a voluminous cloak in order to protect herself from the strong wind.
2. To have packaged something carefully: The large painting was wrapped in several layers of canvas to protect it during transit.
3. To have complete control over someone: Patrice has Brian wrapped around her little finger; that is, she controls him completely and he always does what she wants him to do.

When Lottie started to work on repairing the bookshelf, her first thought was that she had better pay rapt attention to what she was doing or she could have rapped her thumb with the hammer and then she would need to have it wrapped with a bandage.

rappel, repel
rappel (ra PEL) (verb)
To descend a steep slope or vertical face of a mountain, building, or cliff using a rope that is secured at the top and passed through a series of coils or a harness around the body: One of William's hobbies is to rappel down an extreme incline by using a strong double cord fastened above and placed around his physical structure as he moves it out gradually in his descent.
repel (ri PEL) (verb)
1. To ward off or to keep away; to drive back: While camping, Anthony constantly had to repel insects; especially, mosquitoes.
2. To offer resistance to; to fight against: The troops were making efforts to repel an invasion by the terrorists.

In the high adventure story that Stacie was reading, the hero had to rappel down the cliff to warn his friends in time to repel the attack by their enemy.

rapper, wrapper
rapper (RAP uhr) (noun)
1. An individual who taps or hits against something: Sam was wondering who the rapper could be who was knocking on the window.
2. An individual who performs African-American music in which the lyrics are chanted to the accompaniment of music: As Leo was walking through the park, he stopped to listen to the rapper who was sitting on a bench and performing.
3. A door knocker attached to the door by a hinge: Ivan thought the ornamental rapper on the door looked just like his uncle.
wrapper (RAP uhr) (noun)
1. A papercover of a book that is not attached to the book itself: The colorful wrapper on Josie's new publication of her favorite novel enticed her to read it right away.
2. An article of clothing that is worn closely around the body: Camille wore a colorful wrapper in the morning when she ate her breakfast before she dressed for the day.
3. An individual whose responsibility it is to enfold an object in a protective covering: For David's holidays, he worked as a wrapper in the gift department of the department store.

The wrapper at the gift shop was very proud of the fact that his former classmate was now a famous musical rapper and entertainer.

rare, scarce
rare (RAIR) (adjective)
1. A reference to a piece of meat which remains red in the center after cooking: Cara always orders her steak rare when she goes out for dinner.
2. Concerning something which is distinguished by unusual merit or appeal: At the gallery, Mark viewed the rare collection of ivory miniatures.
3. Infrequent, unusual, uncommon: Tabitha and Shelby saw a rare bird while they were out on a hike.
scarce (SKAIRS) (adjective)
1. Idiom: Relating to someone or to an animal that is intentionally elusive or absent: The children were told to make themselves scarce when the parents were decorating the house.
2. Limited quantity in comparison to the interest or demand; so, not easy to procure: The grocer reported that lemons were scarce at this time of year.
3. Hard to find; absent or rare: U.S. steel pennies are scarce now except in coin shops.

In Kevin's art store, there is a scarce supply of copies of the rare print made by the Italian print master of the last century.

rational, rationale
rational (RASH uh nuhl) (adjective)
1. Pertaining to someone who has good judgment: Mable was a rational person and did not make hasty decisions.
2. Regarding to a person who is sane, lucid, and able to make sound judgments: The doctor indicated that the patient was rational and should not be detained in the hospital.
3. Descriptive of something a person clarifies which is sensible and reasonable and not emotional: Jason's explanation for being late seemed rational to him but not to his parents.
rationale (rash" uh NAL) (noun)
The underlying explanation or reason for a situation: The president of the company accounted for his rationale for the layoffs at the factory.

Jeff's friend elucidated the rationale behind his early retirement, but Jill still didn't comprehend the rationale for his decision.

The rationale that Kristie's normally rational friend gave her for getting her speeding ticket was unbelievable.

ravage, ravish
ravage (RAV ij) (verb)
1. To cause violent damage or destruction: Scott was afraid that the severe winds would ravage the countryside.
2. To pillage, to sack; to cause massive wreckage: The revolutionaries marched across the city planning to ravage the palace of the king.
ravish (RAV ish) (verb)
1. To delight, to enrapture, to enchant: Karin was told that the beauty of the valley would ravish her soul.
2. To take away or to seize with violence: The police investigated an accusation by the woman that the man tried to ravish (rape) her.

The destruction by the sudden storm seemed to ravage an entire city block; so, Sherrie was afraid to go downtown to survey the damage for fear it would emotionally ravish her.

raven, raven, ravin, ravine
raven (RAY uhn) (noun)
A large shiny black bird found in Europe, North America, and Asia: Mable and her friends watched the raven glide above them in the clear sky.
raven (RAY uhn) (verb)
To eat or to feed in a greedy manner: Max was so hungry after his long hike that he started to raven his meal, taking large mouthfuls at a time.
ravin (RAV uhn) (verb)
To seize or to capture something as prey: The large black raven swooped down over the field in an attempt to ravin the small field creatures.
ravine (ruh VEEN) (noun)
A small and narrow valley that has been created by a river, but not as large as a canyon: There is a ravine across the street from Anita's home where she frequently goes hiking.

Abigail noticed that a large black raven lived in the ravine near her home; so, one morning she watched it ravin a small animal in the tall grass. She felt sad but she also remembered that the raven was a wild bird and to ravin in the ravine was one aspect of its way to exist.

read, read, reed, reed
read (REED) (noun)
Something written or printed that has been studied, examined and enjoyed: Laurel's latest novel is a good read.
read (REED) (verb)
1. To peruse or to look over something carefully: Ralph will read the author’s notes after he completes reading the book.
2. To follow a course of study at an educational institution or independently: Helene fully intends to read the classics when she goes to school next semester.
reed (REED) (verb)
To make corrugations, such as on the edge of a coin: Nicholas was a famous engineer who developed the machine to reed, or to make grooves on the coins for the mint.
reed (REED) (noun)
1. Any of a number of tall grasses that often grow in wet areas and frequently have jointed stems: Mrs. Smart said to her class, "This is an example of a reed from the marsh and, as a group, they provide a sanctuary for many birds."
2. A wind instrument made of a hollowed piece of wood: Fern brought her new reed with her when she started her new position with the chamber group.
3. Part of the equipment needed when setting up a loom which is used to space the warp threads evenly: Elva's husband made the reed which she used when she was setting up her loom in anticipation of weaving a blanket.

Those who don't read have no advantage over those who can't.

—E. C. McKenzie

The ancient Egyptian book Brandon read was written on papyrus which was made from a reed that grew near the river and one of the illustrations in the book showed a godlike figure playing on a reed instrument.

read, red
read (RED) (verb)
1. To have examined and grasped the meaning of written or printed characters, words, or sentences: Aurora read the newspaper earlier in the morning before she went to work.
2. To have gained information through the perusal of information available in printed, written, or computer form: Frank read the entire list of words shown on the computer and realized that he didn't know all of the definitions.
3. To have reviewed something looking for potential errors: Timothy read the printer's proofs of his new book and was very pleased.
4. To have ordered or reprimanded severely: Greg's mother read the riot act to him because he refused to go to bed when she told him to do it earlier.
red (RED) (noun)
1. A color that is part of a visible spectrum and resembles blood or a ruby stone: The red of the candy looked colorful in the lovely glass dish.
2. A term used to describe an economic or financial loss: The company was in the red last year and the possibility of a turnabout in the near future is minimal.

Madison read a large book with a red cover. It was an account of how the theater company wound up in the red because the management had not read the interests of the patrons correctly.

readable, legible
readable (REE duh buhl) (adjective)
Pleasurable, enjoyable; descriptive of written work that contains enthralling information that is interesting to peruse: Kelsey just published a very readable mystery book.
legible (LEJ uh buhl) (adjective)
A plain, distinct, decipherable composition which is plain and easy to read: Elizabeth had very legible handwriting because she practiced when she was in school.

While writing a readable short story for the local newspaper contest, Ingrid used her most legible handwriting.

real, reel, reel
real (REEL) (adjective)
Existing, factual, or genuine: Eugenia's real name in this world really does exist.
reel (REEL) (noun)
A cylindrical device on which something is wound: Wayne bought a new rod and fishing reel.
reel (REEL) (verb)
1. To pull something in: Christa wanted to reel in a fish that she caught by turning the reel on the fishing rod.
2. To be shocked, confused, and upset; to feel dizzy, to sway: Maude could only reel and stagger from the sudden death of her husband.

When Jennifer went fishing, she had some real pleasure using the reel to pull in the fish.

reality, realty
reality (ree AL i tee) (noun)
1. Something that necessarily exists or must be: The availability of fresh water is a reality of life.
2. The overwhelming sum of events and things: The reality of the situation is that Aaron was lost and so he arrived home very late.
3. The quality or state of existence: Frankie's dream to be a nurse became a reality when she graduated from university.
realty (REE uhl tee) (noun)
Property that may include land and/or buildings: In her will, Dan's mother left him realty which included her house, a cottage, and the farm.

There's a new show on TV that demonstrates the reality of the realty market.

realize, know
realize (REE uh lighz") (verb)
1. To accomplish: Clarice started to realize her dream of being a pilot by taking flying lessons on the weekend.
2. To cause or to appear to be in existence: Angelia was able to realize her characters in her book through careful descriptions.
3. To be completely aware of a situation: Joseph seemed to realize the danger he was facing by choosing to cross the desert by night.
know (NOH) (verb)
1. To have direct knowledge about a certain matter: Jonie will know for a fact that her examination is next week when she sees the class schedule.
2. To be convinced or aware of the truth about something: After reading the budget report, Jim feels that he will know what the real situation is at the company.
3. To have a straightforward, practical understanding of a problem at hand: Frieda will know how to bake bread as soon as she tries her mother's recipe.

Shanna, do you realize that we know just about nothing when it comes to international finances?

ream, ream
ream (REEM) (noun)
1. A measurement of a quantity of paper, typically 500 individual sheets of paper to a package: Lorna bought a ream of green cards on which to print the announcements.
2. A very large amount: There was one ream after another ream of material to read before going to the meeting.
ream (REEM) (verb)
1. To enlarge or to widen a hole using a specifically designed tool: The plumber had to ream the drain pipe so the water could drain properly.
2. To squeeze the juice out of fruit: Susanna will use the gadget with a ridge and conical top to ream the oranges so she can have a fresh orange smoothie for breakfast!

It will take a ream of fresh oranges to ream enough juice for everyone to have a large glassful in the morning.

rear, rear
rear (RIR) (noun)
1. The part of something which is opposite to or away from the front part, or is in the back part of something: There are two bedrooms at the rear of the apartment.
2. The part of a military deployment usually farthest from the fighting front: The troops were redeployed from the camp at the rear where their weapons were upgraded for the next attack.
rear (RIR) (verb)
1. To care for during the early stages of life; for example, animals, or an animal, and children, or a child: The parents tried to rear their children so they would be polite and well-mannered.

Debora wanted to rear her dog to be obedient and friendly.

2. To lift upright or to raise: Cleo and Alisa could see the cliff wall appear to rear way above them.

The race horse owner was careful to rear his horses so they would not rear up if they heard a loud noise. Victor also kept the horses in the rear part of the barn where it was quieter.

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