Commonly Confused Words
1. Avocation & Vocation
Avocation meaning something a person does in addition to a principal occupation, especially for pleasure; hobby.
Usage Example: Being a very busy doctor he finds solace in his avocation of sculpture.
Vocation means the particular occupation for which you are trained.
Usage Example: Working for years as a scriptwriter, he took up acting as his vocation.
2. Babble, Babel & Bauble
Babble means to talk idly, irrationally, excessively, or foolishly; chatter or prattle.
Usage Example: Travelling in the train, in a strange country the babble of voices was reassuring.
Babel means a confusion of noises or voices.
Usage Example: There was a continuous babel coming from the nursery.
Bauble is cheap showy jewellery or ornament on clothing.
Usage Example: She liked to sport her imitation diamond bauble.
3. Bail & Bale
Bail means property or money given as surety that a person released from custody will return at an appointed time.
Usage Example: He was released on bail in two hours.
Bale means a large bundle or package prepared for shipping, storage, or sale, especially one tightly compressed and secured by wires, hoops, cords, or the like, and sometimes having a wrapping or covering.
Usage Example: Bales of hay were lined up at the farmhouse.
4. Bait & Bate
Bait means an allurement; enticement: to keep their workers happy they were thrown the bait of bonuses and extra holidays.
It also means something edible, such as soft bread paste, worms, or pieces of meat, fixed to a hook or in a trap to attract fish or animals.
Usage Example: They carried a bag full of bait and two fishing rods and set off to fish in the stream.
Bate means to diminish or subside; abate.
Usage Example: As soon as his anger began to bate, he saw the reasoning behind her argument.
5. Ballad, Ballet & Ballot
A ballad is a simple narrative poem of folk origin, composed in short stanzas and adapted for singing.
Usage Example: His father was a folk singer famous for his rendition of ballads.
Ballet is a classical style of expressive dancing based on precise conventional steps with gestures and movements of grace and fluidity.
Usage Example: Her movements had the grace of a ballet dancer.
Ballot is a slip or sheet of paper, cardboard, or the like, on which a voter marks his or her vote.
Usage Example: Electronic machines are being used for the purpose of ballot these days.
6. Baron & Barren
Baron can be a member of the lowest grade of nobility, or an important financier or industrialist, especially one with great power in a particular area.
Usage Example: All the appointees to this post are equivalent to that of a baron.
Barren means incapable of producing offspring, seed, or fruit; sterile.
Usage Example: The fruit trees lay barren due to lack of snowfall.
7. Beatify & Beautify
Beatify means to make blissfully happy.
Usage Example: His life was beatified with doing service to the lesser blessed ones.
Beautify means to make or become beautiful.
Usage Example: Spring beautifies the garden as no human effort can
8. Benediction & Malediction
Benediction means an utterance of good wishes or an invocation of divine blessing, esp at the end of a Christian religious ceremony.
Usage Example: The priest gave the new-born child benediction by touching two fingers to his forehead.
Malediction means a curse; imprecation.
Usage Example: They felt defeated at the beginning by the fear of some unseen malediction.
9. Benevolence & Malevolence
Benevolence means desire to do good to others; goodwill; charitableness.
Usage Example: Benevolence is a gift given by God to serve humanity.
Malevolence means the quality, state, or feeling of being malevolent; ill will; malice; hatred.
Usage Example: Malevolence and spite became his way of life after being spurned by one and all.
10. Beseech & Besiege
Beseech means to implore urgently.
Usage Example: The old lady beseeched the young man to let her go as her condition was deteriorating.
Besiege means to crowd around; crowd in upon; surround.
Usage Example: The travel agent was besieged with tourists wanting to know the next flight available, as all the routes were closed due to bad weather.
11. It’s & Its
It's is a contraction of 'it is' or 'it has'.
Usage Example: It's been a month since the last time we met.
Its is a possessive pronoun which refers to association or belongingness of something or a trait to a particular thing.
Usage Example: A car cannot function without its wheels.