Easily Confused Words: Weight vs. Wait

Weight and wait are easily confused words. They are also homophones, meaning they sound the same, but are spelled differently and possess different meanings.

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.

Weight (pronounced “wayt”) has multiple meanings.

  • As a noun, it means the amount of mass an object or creature possesses.
  • As a noun, it can mean a heavy metal disc, kettlebell, or barbell used for strength training.
  • As a noun, it can be a unit of mass. Grams and pounds are both expressions of weight measurement.
  • As a verb, to slant figures toward a specific outcome or goal.

Wait (pronounced “wayt”) has multiple meanings.

  • As a verb, it means to sit in anticipation for an event to happen.
  • As a noun, it can mean the time someone spent sitting in anticipation.

The following story uses both words correctly:

Wednesday was trying to lose weight in order to fit into her dream wedding dress by June. She was doing strength training and cardio several times a week. The wait for the results was proving very difficult.


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