Hard to believe I’ve already been a member here at Story Empire for seven months! Seems like just yesterday I joined the group.
Funny, though. It’s also been seven months since I got put on house arrest by my doctor. One of these scenarios has passed by a lot more quickly than the other! 😀 Huh. Perspective is everything, isn’t it? 😀
Today, I’m continuing with my #WhyWriteWrong? series. This is the eighth one I’ve shared, and I wish I could find a way to connect that to my opening comments, but alas. I’m not coming up with a thing. 😦 Therefore, I’ll just jump right into today’s trio of words that sound alike, but are spelled differently, and mean very different things. In other words, these three words are homophones.
BRACE YOURSELVES. I’M GOING TO BEGIN WITH A LITTLE STORY!
Ahem. Way, way back, when I was a child (more than 65 years ago), we’d often visit my aunt’s house for a few days. That meant making sleeping arrangements for several extra kids. My mother and my aunt would throw down some quilts or blankets on the floor, add an extra pillow, and voila. We slept on what the grown ups called a pallet. Imagine my surprise a few short years later to find out that there were two more words that sounded just like that one, but meant totally different things. Now, I suspect most of you are aware of what each of these words mean, generally, but the trick is to spell them correctly for the use you have in mind.
So, let’s take a look at Pallet, Palette, and Palate. (Why, oh why does English torment us in this manner?)
First up, that pile of blankets on the floor, where I spent many a sleepover giggling away the night with my cousins. That would be pallet, and here are both definitions for this version of the word.
PALLET (Two Ls, one T)
1. A straw mattress or crude, makeshift bed, often just blankets on the floor.
2. A flat transport structure which supports goods in a stable fashion while being lifted by a forklift.
MOVING RIGHT ALONG, HERE’S THE SECOND SPELLING AND SET OF DEFINITIONS FOR THESE HOMOPHONES.
PALETTE (One L, two Ts)
1. A thin board or slab on which an artist lays and mixes colors.
2.The range of colors used by a particular artist or in a particular painting. (Sometimes the VERY WIDE range of colors used by a particular artist. 😀 )
3.Less common, the range or variety of tonal or instrumental “color” in a musical piece.
AND FINALLY, THE THIRD SPELLING AND SET OF DEFINITIONS.
PALATE (One L, One T, Two As)
1. The roof of the mouth, separating the cavities of the nose and the mouth in vertebrates.
2. A person’s appreciation of taste and flavor, especially when sophisticated and discriminating. “The gourmet cuisine is perfect for sophisticated palates.”
Try as I might, I wasn’t able to come up with any amusing tidbits for those of you with a palate for such humor. (Groan) Regardless, I hope these clarifications have been helpful for some of you. Mostly, it’s just going to be a matter of remembering which way to spell the word in the context of your subject matter.
Was this useful for some of you? Do you have confusion with other words that give you problems? Or have you often spotted some of these errors in books you read? Please share your thoughts or questions below because, as always, inquiring minds wanna know. 😀
And with that, I’ll wish you all happy hearts and colorful palettes with which to create your written images! Definitely the best way to go!
I am not an English teacher, grammarian, or expert on all matters of this nature. I don’t even play one on TV! But I promise I have consulted with those in the know before posting anything in this series.
(All images above were created by me or obtained from Pixabay.)