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English Homonyms, Part II

In English, there are many words that sound and are spelled the same but have different meanings. These are called homonyms. It may sound confusing, but in this second lesson in the series (the first lesson was back in October), we'll look at some examples to help clarify the differences so that mixing them up can be avoided!

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A good example of a homonym is the different meanings of the noun "bat":

 

And they'd go in. Skill Cole had a baseball bat. You know they don't play baseball

And they'd go in. Skill Cole had a baseball bat. You know they don't play baseball

Caption 28, The Wailers talk about the early days with Bob Marley

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Well, he'd tell you it was because of that time a bat flew through his window,

Well, he'd tell you it was because of that time a bat flew through his window,

Caption 37, Pop Psych Batman Goes To Therapy

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Thus "bat" can mean the large wooden stick used in the game of baseball, as well as the flying mammalian species for whom the superhero Batman is named.

 

I guess you were right, Linus. I shouldn't have picked this little tree.

I guess you were right, Linus. I shouldn't have picked this little tree.

Caption 3, A Charlie Brown Christmas True Meaning

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Turn left and carry on going until you reach Brushfield Street and turn right down it.

Turn left and carry on going until you reach Brushfield Street and turn right down it.

Captions 26-27, Giving directions with Lauren and Matt

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In the above, you can see that "right" can mean either "correct" or the direction that is the opposite of "left."

 

we're putting out special little clips that aren't in the film

we're putting out special little clips that aren't in the film

Caption 28, Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World Electric Playground Interview - Part 3

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Fill a glass with water and challenge your friends to float a paper clip on top of the liquid. Every time they place something into the glass,

Fill a glass with water and challenge your friends to float a paper clip on top of the liquid. Every time they place something into the glass,

Captions 9-10, Richard Wiseman 10 bets you will always win

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A "clip" can be a segment of film or video footage, or the small metal object used to hold papers together.

 

Let's start with the letter "r".

Let's start with the letter "r".

Caption 18, British vs American English Pronunciation Lesson - Part 1

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We're going to explore how to write a successful cover letter.

We're going to explore how to write a successful cover letter.

Caption 2, Business English Cover letter - Part 1

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The noun "letter" can thus be referring either to the alphabet or to the piece of paper you write upon to send in the mail.

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Further Learning
To find more instances of homonyms like these, have a look at Yabla English and see if you can find more examples in a real-world context.

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