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English for Specific Purposes World (ESP World)

English for Specific Purposes World

ISSN 1682-3257

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4. Common homophones

Homophones are words which are pronounced in the same way but are spelt differently.

Here are some examples of homophones in English.

THERE / THEIR                        WAIST / WASTE                            ROAD / RODE

BEE / BE                                   SEW / SO                                        STARES / STAIRS

FOR /FOUR                              OUR / HOUR                                  WOOD / WOULD

AREN’T / AUNT                       WHERE / WEAR                            PIECE / PEACE

AIR / HEIR                                 RIGHT / WRITE                              SIGHT / SITE

WAIT / WEIGHT                        SCENE / SEEN                              FARE / FAIR

RAISE / RAYS                           STEAK / STAKE                            SALE / SAIL

FLU / FLEW                              HOARSE / HORSE                         RAIN / REIN

MIGHT / MITE                          GREAT / GRATE                           MOAN / MOWN


Fill in the gaps using an appropriate word.

  1. Watching TV is a ____________ of time.
  2. The eldest son of the monarch is the __________ to the throne.
  3. The question is to _____ or not to ______.
  4. His girlfriend has a narrow ________.
  5. Alfred Nobel was a ________ inventor.
  6. _______ races are very popular in Britain.
  7. You are English, _______ you?
  8. If you ask me, he is good _____ nothing.
  9. On the one hand, you _______ be right, but on the other hand  you may be wrong.
  10. He keeps sneezing and coughing, perhaps he has got ______.
  11. Lately a ______ has become the most feared insect in the countryside.
  12. They went to casino and played for a high _______.
  13. Children had to read the thick volume of “War and _______”.
  14. Everybody thought it was a ______ play.
  15. My neighbours have _______ the grass in their garden.
  16. His speech was so long that he talked himsellf _________.
  17. They always walked in the morning ______ or shine.
  18. The notice says “Lift is out of order, use the _______”.
  19. You must _______ formal clothes for reception in the Palace.
  20. "To have a _____ in one's bonnet" means to behave in a strange manner.
  21. What is the average ______ going by bus?
  22.  Supermarkets often put up for ______ unsaleable goods.
  23.  I ________ rather they joined us as soon as possible.
  24.  Wine from the ______ is much better than from the bottle.
  25. Rumours are in the _____ that he is about to leave.
  26. Every summer she is puzzled as _______ to go on holidays.
  27. Sometimes we do not know _____ own mind.
  28. Haven’t you _____ him at the conference?
  29. The _____ of this film is laid in Paris.
  30. Teacher’s patience is running thin because of ______ misconduct.

Answer keys

Galina Kavaliauskienė
Mykolas Romeris University, Vilnius, Lithuania



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