Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Commonly misused/misspelled words and phrases (Part 6)

Continuing the series, here are some more words and phrases that I frequently see misused or misspelled:

Advice vs. advise

Wrong: I need some advise.
Right: I need some advice.

These are opposite sides of the same coin. If someone asks you for help, they’re looking for advice (a noun). If you give them what they’re looking for, you advise them (a verb). A spell-checker won’t catch this for you, because both words are spelled correctly.

Infer vs. imply

Wrong: He inferred that you need to lose weight.
Right: He implied that you need to lose weight.

Speaking of two sides of the same coin…. When I speak, I might imply something, but when you listen, you infer something from what you heard.

Loose vs. lose

Wrong: I hate to loose.
Right: I hate to lose.

A nut comes loose from a bolt, but if it falls off you can easily lose or misplace it. This is another one a spell-checker can’t catch for you. You’ll have to be on the watch for it yourself.

More next time.


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