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Confusing Words with Homonyms
(also New Jersey-Approved)
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Texas Program # SP201222
Texas Effective Dates 01/01/2013 - 12/31/2013

New Jersey Board Course# 37-2013

NCRA #PQ-CRCEU-CWWH012513 (0.30)

accept; except, excepted; excepted

accept (verb)

1. To receive with consent, to agree to, to consent to, to acknowledge. "James decided to accept Jill's invitation to the party."

2. To take what is offered, receive willingly. "Sherry was happy to accept Rita's offering of a cool drink on such a hot day."

except, excepted (verbs)

To leave out, excluding, or showing exclusion: "Jim's mother told him to put everything on the shelf into the box, but to except the vase."

"The professor announced that no one in the class will be excepted from taking the test."

"What I said about some people applies to men in general, present company excepted."

excepted (adjective)

Not included in a group nor in a collection: "What Irene said about some people applies to individuals in general, present company excepted."

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acetic, ascetic; aesthetic, esthetic

acetic (uh SEE tik) (adjective)
1. Sour, acerbic: "These pickles are too acetic; that is, too sour!"

2. A reference to vinegar or other acid characteristics: "The acetic flavor of vinegar is used in salad dressings to give them a little punch."

ascetic (uh SET ik) (adjective)
A life of rigorous self-discipline and self-denial; an abstainer. "Some people believe that most of the early saints chose to live an ascetic life style."

aesthetic, esthetic (es THET ik) (adjective)
Characterized by a heightened sensitivity to beauty. "There are practical as well as aesthetic reasons for planting trees."

Sometimes a very ascetic individual can develop an acetic personality which spoils the natural aesthetic potential of the individual.

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ad: advertisement

add: to perform addition; to increase an amount

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ades: fruit beverages

aides: people who assist

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adduce, deduce

adduce (verb):
Offer as a reason in support of an argument; cite as pertinent, conclusive, or persuasive: "At least the speaker did adduce three reasons for his actions."

deduce (verb):
1. Reach a conclusion by reasoning: "Based on the forensic evidence, the police officer was able to deduce that the criminal was a man."

2. Trace the course, descent, or origin of: "Based on Rhonda's conversation, Floyd could deduce that she had come from a large family."

Because the officer was able to adduce an explanation for the accident, the judge was able to deduce who was responsible.

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adverse: unfortunate; strongly opposed (refers to things, not people)
Examples: an adverse reaction to the laundry detergent; adverse weather conditions

averse: having repugnance (refers to people)
"He is averse to being ill."

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advice (noun): recommendation or opinion

advise (verb): the act of giving a recommendation or opinion

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affect vs. effect:

Rule 1. Use "effect" when you mean bring about or brought about, cause or caused.
"He
effected an uprising in the crowd."
Meaning: He caused an uprising in the crowd.

Rule 2. Use "effect" when you mean "result."
"What effect did that speech have?"

Rule 3. Also use "effect" whenever any of these words precede it: a, an, any, the, take, into, no. These words may be separated from "effect" by an adjective.
"That pain patch had a long-lasting effect on my back."

"Has the garbage strike produced any noticeable effects?"

Rule 4. Use the verb "affect" when you mean to influence rather than to cause.
"How do the budget cuts affect the city?"

Rule 5. "Affect" is used as a noun to mean "emotional expression."
"She showed little affect when told she had won the lottery."

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ail: to be ill; to be in pain or distress

ale: malt beverage

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air: what we breathe

err: to make a mistake

heir: one who inherits something

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aisle: passageway

I'll: contraction for "I will"

isle: a small island

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all: everything

awl: a tool

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allot: to parcel out

a lot: always two words, meaning "many"

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allowed: gave permission to

aloud: spoken verbally

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all ready: means "all are ready"
"We are all ready to go."

already: refers to time
"Is it summer already?"

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all together: refers to a group; all of us or all of them together
"It is wonderful to be all together to celebrate your birthday."

altogether: entirely
"It is not altogether his fault."

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altar: pedestal, usually religious
"They exchanged wedding vows at the altar of the church."

alter: to modify
"Please don't alter the contract in any way."

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allude: to refer indirectly
"She alluded to her past as a dancer."

elude: avoid capture
"The fugitive eluded the police for a month."

illude: mislead
"He illuded her about his age."

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allusion: an indirect mention of something.
"He alluded to the fact that she had been a stripper, without coming right out and saying so."

illusion: false perception.
"Although she collected a modest salary, she created an illusion of wealth."

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ambiguous: to have more than one meaning
"The law was ambiguous."

ambivalent: to have mixed feelings
"She is ambivalent about her wedding dress."

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amicable: friendly (refers to things, not people)

amiable: friendly (refers to people)

The amiable couple had an amicable divorce.

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among: involves three or more
"Who among us has not lied?"

between: involves just two
"She couldn't decide between Mexican and Thai food."

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amount: used for things not countable
"We couldn't handle that amount of ill will."

number: used for things that can be counted
"The number of accidents increased by ten percent."

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ant: a bug

aunt: the sister of a parent

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ante: a bet placed before playing

auntie: affectionate term for a parent's sister

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anxious: to have worry or anxiety
"She is anxious about not getting enough sleep."

eager: excited; anticipating
"She is eager to get a puppy."

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any more: something additional or further
"It didn't rain any more this year than last year."

anymore: any longer, nowadays
"Harry doesn't travel anymore."

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appraise: to put a value on something, as in a house

apprise: to notify

The realtor apprised the homeowner of the recent appraisal of his property.

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arc: arch, crescent, half-moon shape

ark: a vessel or a refuge

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ascent (noun): to move upward

assent (noun or verb): enthusiastic agreement; to agree

consent: agreement

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assistance (noun): help, as in to give help or assistance

assistants (noun): people who help

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assumption: an idea not based on evidence

presumption: an idea based on evidence

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assure: to promise or say with confidence

ensure: to make sure something will/won't happen

insure: to issue an insurance policy

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aural: having to do with hearing

oral: having to do with the mouth

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avocation, vocation

avocation (noun): An activity taken up in addition to one's regular work or profession, usually for enjoyment; a hobby. "Lana's favorite avocation is reading."

vocation (noun): A regular occupation, especially one for which a person is particularly suited or qualified. "Darwin is a carpenter by vocation, but his hobby is painting."

Any time someone is able to combine his or her avocation and vocation, such as being a professor of literature and writing a novel in his spare time, he should feel very fortunate.

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awed: amazed

odd: unusual; opposite of "even" when referring to numbers

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awful, offal

awful (adjective)

1. Dreadful, bad, terrible: "What awful weather!"
"Kendrick was guilty of the awful crime of murder."

2. Awe-inspiring, awesome, wondrous: "The astronauts know the awful expanse of the solar system."

offal (noun):
The waste parts of butchered animals, carrion, carcass, such as entrails. "The lions ate the meat from their kill and left the offal for the hyenas."

Garbage is an offal waste.

-- Evan Esar

Offal smells really awful!

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awhile, a while

awhile (adverb): For a short time; an adverb which is never preceded by a preposition such as "for." "Let us wait awhile" (not "for awhile").
"I'm going to sit and rest awhile."

"This cold weather has been around awhile."

a while (noun): A period of time. "Stay for a while," or, "Stay a while."
"I'm going to be away for a while."

"We had to wait for quite a while before our meals were served."

Brenda asked him to stay awhile, just a little while longer.

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bad, badly

bad (BAHD) (adjective)

1. Not good; poor, inferior, below standard; faulty, defective. "Most people think that Mike is a bad carpenter."
"Jarrod, your car won't start if the battery is bad."

2. Immoral, unethical, wrong. "Lying is a bad thing."

3. Erroneous, wrong, incorrect. "Gretchen's bad spelling kept her from becoming a secretary."

badly (adverb)

1. Poorly, improperly, incorrectly. "Elvin did the work very badly."

2. Immorally, unethically, corruptly. "The army behaved badly toward the war prisoners."

3. Very much, greatly, intensely. "Lorena's tooth hurts badly." "Young Tyson wanted a new bicycle badly."

Mindy bade us goodbye after we had a very bad meal. In fact, when Kendrick got home, his stomach was behaving badly, and he felt ill the rest of the night.

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bald: having no hair

bawled: cried hard

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bare: naked, unconcealed, plain

bear: an animal

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based: be dependent or supported

baste: to moisten; also to criticize or lash out at

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bases (noun, verb): builds on; also headquarters (plural of base)

basis (noun): foundation; belief

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beach: sandy area near or at water

beech: a type of tree with smooth, gray bark

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because vs. since

"Because" and "since" can be used almost interchangeably, although "because" always indicates cause and effect, and "since" is used for a relationship or time.
Examples
:
Since I got paid today, I will go shopping for new clothes. (not cause and effect)

I will stay home from work because I am ill. (cause and effect)

I have wanted to meet you since last fall. (time)

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bell: an alarm; a signal

belle: a beautiful or charming woman, often a Southern term

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berth: a boat dock; bedroom or bed

birth: being born; beginning

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better: someone or something of higher quality

bettor: someone who places bets

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biannual: twice a year

biennial: every two years

semiannual: twice a year (same as biannual)

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bite: to use one's teeth to chew or tear

byte: computer term for eight bits of information

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bloc: a group united for a particular purpose

block: city street; a cube-shaped object

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bolder: more daring

boulder: a large rock

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boy: male child

buoy: a naval beacon or marker

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brewed: fermented

brood (verb, noun): mull over; a cluster or family

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bring: you bring something towards

take: you take something away

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broach: to raise a topic for discussion

brooch: a bauble; a piece of jewelry

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brows: the hairs in the arch above the eyes

browse: search for, peruse

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cacao, coca, cocaine, cocoa, coco

cacao (kuh KOU) (noun)
A South American tree,
Theobroma cacao, which produces the seed pods, the beans of which are used to make cocoa.

coca (KOH kuh) (noun)
One of several South American plants of the
Erythroxylon family, whose leaves contain cocaine and other alkaloids used to make highly addictive substances.

cocaine (koh KAYN) (noun)
A narcotic (alkaloid) extracted from coca leaves, used as a surface anesthetic or taken as a narcotic which can become powerfully addictive as a stimulant of the central nervous system.

cocoa (KOH koh) (noun)
1.
Cocao beans which have been roasted and ground to a powder and from which much of the fat has been extracted, often used for baking or making a hot drink.

2. The ground powder made from the cacao beans, which is mixed with milk or water and sugar to make chocolate (drink or syrup).

coco (KOH koh) (noun)
The coconut palm and its fruit.

As a tourist, one must be careful when buying a hot drink of cocoa, which is made from the seed of the cacao tree. Don�t be tricked into buying some coca leaves from which cocaine is made.
In fact, you are probably better off if you just buy coco from the local market.

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cache: hidden stash

cash: money

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can: able to

may: permission to

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cannon: large, mounted gun

canon: rule, commandment

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canvas: awning cloth, tarp

canvass: to poll; a poll

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capital: assets; essential; main city

capitol: statehouse

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carat: unit of weight in gemstones

caret: a proofreading mark to show insertion (^)

carrot: edible root

karat: a unit for measuring the fineness of gold

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carry-on: small-sized luggage and personal items you take with you onto an airplane

carrion: dead and putrefying flesh

The scientist laughed when the TSA agent fainted after finding the carrion he had in his carry-on luggage.

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cast (noun, verb): group of actors; to throw

caste: a social class, a rigid system of social distinctions

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cay: a small, low island (also spelled key)

key: a small, low island; instrument for opening locks

quay: (pronounced key) wharf, dock, pier

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cede: to surrender

seed: reproductive germ

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censor (verb, noun): disallow; person who disallows
"The soldier's letters were censored before mailing."

censure: to disapprove of; criticize strongly
"The children were censured by the principal."

sensor: a device that measures heat, light, etc. and transmits a signal to a control or measuring instrument

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chance: accident(al)

chants: chorus, melody

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chased: went after

chaste: pure, virginal

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choral (adj.): having to do with a chorus or a choir
"My choral group meets on Wednesday evenings."

chorale (noun): a hymn; a group of singers specializing in church music

coral (noun, adj.): material that makes up reefs; a pinkish-orange color

corral (noun, verb): a horse pen; to confine

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chord: three or more musical tones sounded simultaneously; line segment joining two points on a curve

cord: a rope or strand of flexible material

cored: removed the center of something

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cite: to assert; to quote from; to subpoena

sight: vision, the power to see

site: a location or position

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click: a sound

clique: a group

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climactic: having to do with the climax

climatic: having to do with the climate

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coarse: rough, lacking in fineness of texture; crude

course: a class; a path

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colonel: an officer in the military

kernel: a seed

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complement: completing part of an order; things that go together well
"Rosanne's purple scarf was a nice complement to her flaming red hair."

compliment: praise
"Rosanne thanked Ben for his compliment about her purple scarf."

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confidant: someone confided in

confident: certain, sure

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connote: to suggest, imply
"A growling dog connotes danger."

denote: to be a sign of
"Certain clouds denote rain on the way."

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continual: chronic; repeated but with breaks in between
"The continual problem of a leaky roof forced us to reroof our house."

continuous: without interruption in an unbroken stream of time or space
"The continuous baying of the dog kept the baby awake."

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core: center or crucial part

corps: trained group

corpse: dead body

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cosign: to sign along with

cosine: a trigonometry term

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council: a group of people meeting for a purpose

counsel (verb, noun): advise; advice, an attorney

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cue:

1. something said or done that provides the signal for somebody to say or do something

2. something that prompts or reminds somebody to do something

3. a stimulus or pattern of stimuli, often not consciously perceived, that results in a specific learned behavioral response

4. a long tapered rod with a leather tip used to strike the cue ball in billiards and pool

queue:

1. a set of computer tasks: a series of messages or jobs waiting to be processed automatically one after the other by a computer system.

2. a line of waiting people or vehicles

3. man's pigtail; a long braid of hair worn hanging down the back of the neck

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currant: type of small berry

current: up to date

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curser: someone who swears or wishes misfortune on another

cursor: a blinking symbol indicating position on a computer screen

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desert (noun, verb): a desolate area; to abandon

dessert: double s's for Sugary, Sinful treat

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desperate: lost all hope, in despair

disparate: entirely dissimilar

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device (noun): an invention

devise (verb): to invent

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