The Homonym/Homophone Page

Which is it, homonyms or homophones? You decide:

Homonym
One of two or more words that have the same sound and often the same spelling but differ in meaning, such as bank (embankment) and bank (place where money is kept).
Homophone
One of two or more words, such as night and knight, that are pronounced the same but differ in meaning, origin, and sometimes spelling.

Source: Dictionary.com

Criteria for My List

  • Standard modern American English pronunciation (checked against Meriam-Webster Online).
  • Must be different spellings.
  • Must mean different things (i.e., cannot be two different spellings with the same definition).
  • No directly foreign words that would not be found in an English dictionary and are not used in English conversation.
  • No proper nouns.

About Me

I am not an English teacher nor a professional linguist. I started this list a long, long time ago for personal reasons, and it’s kind of grown from there. If you want to contact me to ask a question or suggest a grouping, be my guest. But I cannot provide expert answers to questions outside my expertise. This list is for recreational purposes only, and should not be considered a comprehensive list of homonyms or homophones of the English language. Thank you.

The List

ad add
ade aid
ail ale
air ere err heir
aisle I’ll isle
ait ate eight
all awl
ant aunt see note
ante anti
ar are
arc ark
ascent assent
away aweigh
aye eye I
bail bale
bait bate
ball bawl
band banned
bare bear
base bass
be bee
beach beech
beat beet
beau bow
been bin
beer bier
berth birth
bight bite byte
blew blue
bloc block
boar bore
board bored
boarder border
bode bowed
born borne bourn bourne
bough bow
brake break
bread bred
bridal bridle
broach brooch
but butt
buy by bye
cache cash
capital capitol
carat carrot karat
cast caste
cay key quay
cede seed
cee sea see
cel cell sell
cellar seller
censer censor sensor
cent scent sent
cents sense
cereal serial
chased chaste
chews choose
chili chilly
choral coral
chorale corral
chute shoot
cite sight site
clause claws
close clothes
coarse course
cocks cox
colonel kernel
complement compliment
coo coup
core corps
creak creek
cue queue
cygnet signet
cymbal symbol
dam damn
days daze
dear deer
defused diffused
dew do due
die dye
discreet discrete
doe dough
draft draught
earn erne urn
ewe u yew you
fain feign
fair fare
faze phase
feat feet
file phial
fir fur
flair flare
flea flee
flew flu flue
flocks phlox
floe flow
flour flower
for fore four
foreword forward
foul fowl
freeze frieze
friar fryer
gait gate
gene jean
gild guild
gnu knew new nu
gored gourd
grate great
grisly grizzly
groan grown
guide guyed
hail hale
hair hare
hall haul
halve have
hart heart
hay hey
heal heel
hear here
heard herd
heroin heroine
hi high
higher hire
him hymn
hoar whore
hoard horde
hoarse horse
hoes hose
hold holed
hole whole
holey holy wholly
hour our
idle idol idyll
ileum ilium
in inn
it’s its
jewel joule
knap nap
knead kneed need
knight night
knit nit
knot not
know no
knows nose
lay lei
lays laze leas leis see note
leach leech
lead led
lead lede
leak leek
lean lien
liable libel
liar lyre
lie lye
links lynx
loan lone
locks lox
made maid
mail male
main mane
maize maze
mall maul
marshall martial
mean mien
meat meet mete
medal meddle
might mite
mince mints
mind mined
moan mown
moat mote
mode mowed
moo moue see note
moor more
moose mousse
morning mourning
muscle mussel
mustard mustered
naval navel
nay nee neigh
none nun
o oh
oar or ore
oh owe
one won
pail pale
pain pane
pair pare pear
palate palette
pall pawl
patience patients
pause paws
pea pee
peace piece
peak peek pique
peal peel
pearl perl
pedal peddle
peer pier
pi pie
picks pyx
pidgin pigeon
pistil pistol
plain plane
pleas please
plum plumb
pole poll
poor pore pour
praise prays
pray prey
presence presents
prince prints
principal principle
profit prophet
psalter salter
psi si sigh
quean queen
rack wrack
rain reign rein
raise rays raze
rap wrap
rapt wrapped
read reed
read red
real reel
reek wreak
rest wrest
retch wretch
review revue
rho roe row
rhyme rime
right rite wright write
ring wring
role roll
root route see note
rote wrote
rough ruff
rout route see note
rye wry
sail sale
scene seen
seam seem
seamen semen
seas sees seize
sew so sow
shake sheik
shear sheer
shoe shoo
shore sure
side sighed
sighs size
sign sine
slay sleigh
sleight slight
slew slue
sloe slow
soar sore
soared sword
sole soul
some sum
son sun
spade spayed
staid stayed
stair stare
stake steak
stationary stationery
steal steel
straight strait
suite sweet
tacks tax
tail tale
tare tear
taught taut
tea tee
team teem
tear tier
tease tees
tense tents
tern turn
their there they’re
threw through
throne thrown
thyme time
tic tick
tide tied
to too two
toad towed
toe tow
tough tuff
troop troupe
vail vale veil
vain vane vein
vial vile
wail whale
waist waste
wait weight
want wont
war wore
ware wear where
way weigh
we wee
we’d weed
weak week
weather whether
weir we’re
whine wine
why wye
wind wined
wood would
yoke yolk
yore your you’re