Easily Confused Words: Veracity vs. Voracity

Veracity and voracity are easily confused words.

The spell-check application of most word processing software programs would not catch a slip-up of these two words. Spell-check is looking for words that aren’t in its dictionary, and words that resemble words in its dictionary but are possibly spelled wrong. Spell-check isn’t perfect. It doesn’t know and can’t guess what word you wanted or what word you meant, it can only judge the words on the page. If you used words that are all spelled correctly, it gives you a pass anyway.

Autocorrect suggests words that start with the same letters. It’s suggesting what word you may want to save time, but quite often, its suggestions are pretty off base. They don’t help you out, but they do make you laugh.

Veracity (pronounced “vurr-ass-city”) is a noun. It’s the quality of someone being honest, truthful, accurate, or candid in in his/her speech.

Voracity (pronounced “vaw-reh-city”) is a noun. It means having the quality of being full of life, having a great appetite for experiences.

The following story uses both words correctly:

Vero was giving a eulogy about his Nana Ginny. He recalled her voracity, like her talent for throwing incredible family get togethers. Occasionally, non-family would stop by unexpectedly and she’d insist they stay and join in the fun anyway. She was fiercely proud of her brood: four kids, 16 grandkids. 

In more intimate conversations as they made a snack together, she told him stories of her life as a little girl. She emphasized how important it was to be courageous, and to speak with veracity, even when it was difficult.

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