#EngVocab: Homophones start with “W”

Good evening, Fellas! It’s midweek already. Did your day go as well as mine? I hope it did! Today is Wednesday, so I want to talk about some words that start with a “W.”

The words I’m going to talk about sound similar, but have different meanings. They are: “waist” and “waste”; “whoever” and “whomever”; “while” and “whilst”; “whether,” “weather,” and “wether.”

Here are some explanations about the differences:

“Waist” and “waste”

“Waist” (n) is the part of the body between the ribs and hips. Meanwhile “waste” can be a noun, a verb, or an adjective. As a noun, it means useless materials left over from another activity (i.e., rubbish (UK) or  garbage (US)). As a verb, “waste” means to expend materials or resources without reason. For example, “Do not waste drinking water.” Lastly, as an adjective, “waste” means uninhabited or uncultivated (usually of land).

“Whoever” and “whomever”

“Whoever” (just like he) is the subject of a verb.

Example:

  • “Whoever finds me wins a cake.” (Whoever is the subject of finds)

“Whomever” (just like him) is never the subject of a verb, tt is an object.

Example:

  • “Whomever I find loses a cake.” (Whomever is the direct object of I find.)

“While” and “whilst”

“While” and “whilst” have a similar meaning when we use them as conjunctions. They both mean ‘during the time that something else happens’, or ‘in contrast with something else’. “While” is frequently used in daily communication than “whilst.” Besides, “whilst” sounds more formal.

“While” can be either a noun or a verb, while “whilst” doesn’t have the same trait. As a noun, “while” means a period of time. As a verb, it means an activity to spend the time (usually at a leisurely pace).

Example:

  • “I lived there for a while.” (while as a noun).
  • “She used to while away the hours in the meadow.” (while as a verb)

“Whether,” “weather,” and “wether”

“Whether” is a conjunction with a similar meaning to “if.”

Example:

  • “I wonder whether it will rain.”

“Weather “refers to the state of the atmosphere, e.g., temperature, wind, clouds, rain).

Lastly, a “wether” is a castrated ram (male sheep).

Compiled and written by @EnglishTips4U for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, 23 September, 2015.


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