As business copywriters to scores of companies in the UK and overseas, we at Wordsworks Towers like to think we do our bit to improve the world’s grammar and punctuation.

As such, we take it a little more personally than most when we receive packages through the post with warning notices such as this…












Rest assured, the offending slip of paper was fed into the office shredder before we excitedly opened the box and removed our new wine goblets.

And needless to say, they were smashed anyway.

In recognition of this crime against spelling, here are ten more words which sound the same but have different spellings and meanings – otherwise known as ‘heterographs’.

  • Reign/rein: royal rule/horse’s leash
  • Tyre/tire: a car wheel/to feel sleepy
  • Colonel/kernel: military rank/centre of a nut
  • Balmy/barmy: mild/mad
  • Lightning/lightening: electrical bolts from the sky/lessening the load
  • Gamble/gambol: wager/lark about like a little lamb
  • Bear/bare: picnic-loving animal/unveil or endure
  • Flaw/floor: blemish/what we walk on
  • Stalk/stork: to follow/large bird which delivers babies
  • Laud/lord: To praise/deity or high-ranking politician