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Read thousands of example sentences from current newspapers, magazines, and literature. We show you how words live in the wild and give you usage tips so that you're more confident about using the words you learn.

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confidant

A confidant is the person you tell your secrets to. Your confidant has all the dirt on you, so don't forget his birthday or he might start talking...

Confidants are people you trust enough to tell anything, like that you cried during "The Muppet Movie." They might give advice, too. The President has lots of confidants in his inner circle who not only know all about secret government issues, but also give their opinions about what actions he should take. Make sure to spell the word with the ant ending, because confident means something else. Think of confiding in your aunt, your confidANT.

Choose your words

Caught between words? Learn how to make the right choice.

unexceptional/ unexceptionable

Clearly, past writers have confused the meanings of unexceptional and unexceptionable to an extent that meanings are expanding.
read more...

peddle/ pedal/ petal

Sometimes the only way to choose your words with homophones is to memorize their spellings and meanings. Pedal/peddle/petal is one such set of homophones.
read more...

palate/ palette/ pallet

Palette can refer to a range of colors. A platform used for moving things is a pallet. And your preference of flavors in food is your palate.
read more...

rebut/ refute

To rebut is to try to prove something isn’t true, but to refute is to actually prove it isn’t. Getting them mixed up won’t get you kicked out of the debate club, but it’s worth knowing the difference. read more...

empathy/ sympathy

Empathy is heartbreaking — you experience other people’s pain and joy. Sympathy is easier because you just have to feel sorry for someone. Send a sympathy card if someone’s cat died; feel empathy if your cat died, too. read more...

disinterested/ uninterested

If you’re disinterested, you’re unbiased; you’re out of the loop. But if you’re uninterested, you don’t give a hoot; you’re bored. These two words have been duking it out, but the battle may be over for uninterested. Heavyweight disinterested has featherweight uninterested on the ropes. read more...

See all Choose Your Words articles »
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