Easily Confused Words: Weekend vs. Weakened

Weekend and weakened 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.

Weekend (pronounced “week-ehnd”) is a noun. It means Saturday and Sunday. These are two days people working a 40 hour week typically have off from work.

Weakened (pronounced “week-ehnd”/”week-uhnd”) is the past tense of the verb “weaken.” It means to take the strength away from something or someone else.

The following story uses both words correctly:

Weit worked long hours as a pharmacist, concocting unique remedies for clients’ ailments. Some were strengthened in potency, some were weakened. This job paid well and offered many challenges. Unfortunately it also demanded a lot of long hours indoors under fluorescent lights. Once a month, he got a weekend off. The first thing he did on those special weekends was grab his kiteboard and catch some waves.

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