Category Archives: Commonly Confused Words

Commonly confused words: medal and meddle and pedal and peddle (and pedaller and pedlar)

Medal and meddle The difference between medal and meddle is straightforward: a medal is a small, wearable ornament, usually a metal disk, that usually either commemorates an event or has been awarded in recognition of some achievement. We see returned service personnel or their descendants wear their medals as they march on Anzac Day or

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Commonly confused words: wringer and ringer

In honour of International Women’s Day this coming Friday (8 March), I pay tribute to those who invented and developed washing machines, one of the great labour-saving inventions, freeing women from the hard work of boiling clothes in coppers, rinsing them and wringing them through a mangle. Washing machines have become so common that it

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Commonly confused words: child-like and childish (and man-like, mannish, woman-like and womanish)

Child-like or childish? These two words look alike but they actually mean opposite things. Child-like means all the good things about children: child-like innocence, child-like wonder, child-like joy, child-like freedom.  You can remember it easily as all the things to like about childhood. But childish means all the things to dislike about children: childish tantrum,

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Commonly confused words: forbear/forebear, forgo/forego, forward/foreword

Looking forward to the new year? Perhaps you’re planning to forgo (or should that be forego?) a relaxing holiday and replace it with a disciplined approach to some new lifestyle habits? Perhaps those around you will need to show a little forbearance (or should that be forebearance?) as you try to settle into a new

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