Mixed-up Meanings

  1. Marshal vs. Martial: Do You Know The Difference?

    It’s not enough that martial and marshal are pronounced the same, is it? No, the English language has to further complicate things, because while these homophones, martial and marshal, have different meanings, they both involve some overlapping concepts of law and war. And adding to the understandable confusion of these words is marshall, with two Ls. Let’s marshal, shall we say, the facts, and bring …

  2. “Pragmatic” vs. “Dogmatic”: What Are The Differences?

    Some people have the incredible ability to set their emotions aside and make clear, calm decisions in a crisis. Instead of getting caught up in big-picture ideals or feeling overwhelmed by the scale of a situation, they manage to face the problem head on and address it practically one step at a time. For those who don’t crumble under pressure, does this practical nature make …

  3. The Deep Web vs. The Dark Web: Do You Know The Difference?

    Have you ever wandered the?recesses of the deep?web and dark web? Or have you simply wondered what these expressions mean??These two terms are just as mysterious as they sound, but they’re not synonyms, despite how similar they may seem at first glance. There’s a lot of confusion out there about how to distinguish between these two terms, which both define hidden aspects of the Internet. …

  4. Manslaughter vs. Murder: Differences In Intent And Degree

    How can a person cause the death of another without the act being considered a murder? In US law, it can come down to differences between manslaughter and murder—which comes down to differences in intent and degree. What does manslaughter mean? Manslaughter, simply defined, is “the unlawful killing of a human being without malice aforethought.” US law designates two types of manslaughter: voluntary and involuntary. …

  5. “Macaroon” vs. “Macaron”: What’s The Difference Between These Sweet Treats?

    If you’re a dessert lover, there’s a good chance that you enjoy both a rich coconut cluster cookie as well as a delicate almond cookie with a buttercream center. But which of these treats is a macaroon and which is a macaron? And did you know they were two different, albeit delicious, things? Although most foodies know the difference between these beloved cookies, many people …

  6. Absentee Ballot vs. Mail-In Ballot: Is There A Difference?

    As if the coronavirus pandemic wasn’t already challenging enough, the US will be holding a general election in the midst of it. Many people are rightfully concerned that traditional, in-person voting could spread COVID-19, and so some states are changing (or considering changing) their voting rules to make it easier for eligible people to vote by mail. Voting by mail can be done by what’s …

  7. “Goth” vs. “Emo”: What’s The Difference?

    It’s finally time to settle one of the most annoying mixed-up meanings in modern times … at least for goths (and the emo crowd). You’ve almost certainly heard of both goth and emo, but do you know that each of these are actually rather distinct terms, especially for fans of either music genre and lifestyle? Below, we’ll break down the meaning and differences of both …

  8. “Misinformation” vs. “Disinformation”: Get Informed On The Difference

    Amid the coronavirus pandemic, we are all desperate for information. Where did the virus come from? Is there a cure? How can we keep staying safe? Will life get back to normal? In the case of COVID-19, information can be a literal life-saver—when it’s true. Wrong information doesn’t help anyone and can even make things worse. And like a virus, wrong information can spread, causing …

  9. “Psychic” vs. “Medium”: Are These Synonyms?

    Some people seem to be born with a special intuition to always know things before they happen. Others have a special gift allowing them to see ghosts or talk to the dead. But are people with these unique talents psychics or mediums? And can the words psychic and medium be interchanged? The answer is sometimes; psychic and medium?aren’t always synonyms, and despite both having a …

  10. “Fictional,” “Fictitious,” And “Fictive”: Are They Synonyms?

    Although some people absolutely love reading true stories, there are others who have no interest in nonfiction books. Instead, they prefer to dive into stories from made-up universes instead of immersing themselves in facts. So do they prefer fictional novels, fictitious tales, or fictive stories? All three of these adjectives look and sound similar, but are they synonyms that can be interchanged? The answer is …

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