List of English homographs

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Homographs are words with the same spelling but having more than one meaning. Homographs may be pronounced the same (homonyms), or they may be pronounced differently (heteronyms, also known as heterophones).

Some homographs are nouns or adjectives when the accent is on the first syllable, and verbs when it is on the second. When the prefix "re-" is added to a monosyllabic word, the word gains currency both as a noun and as a verb.

Most of the pairs listed below are closely related: for example, "absent" as a noun meaning "missing", and as a verb meaning "to make oneself missing." There are also many cases in which homographs are of an entirely separate origin, or whose meanings have diverged to the point that present-day speakers have little historical understanding: for example, "bat". Many, though not all of these, have first syllables that evolved from Latin. Also, some words only exhibit stress alternation in certain dialects of English. For a list of homographs with different pronunciations (heteronyms) see List of heteronyms.

  1. bass
  2. bow
  3. buck
  4. crane
  5. discharge
  6. dismount
  7. display
  8. doing
  9. down
  10. drawer
  11. dub
  12. effect
  13. engage
  14. entrances
  15. evening
  16. exploit
  17. extract
  18. file
  19. finance
  20. fine
  21. flush
  22. foot
  23. gay
  24. hoe
  25. impact
  26. implant
  27. import
  28. impound
  29. incline
  30. increase
  31. insert
  32. insult
  33. intercept
  34. interchange
  35. intrigue
  36. into
  37. invalid
  38. invite
  39. just
  40. lead
  41. letter
  42. lie
  43. light
  44. lighter
  45. live
  46. manifest
  47. match
  48. may[dubious ]
  49. mind
  50. minute
  51. moped
  52. mortar
  53. murder
  54. nail
  55. notice
  56. novel
  57. number
  58. object
  59. obtuse
  60. obituary
  61. offense
  62. overcount
  63. overlay
  64. overlook
  65. park
  66. patient
  67. perfect
  68. perfume
  69. permit
  70. pervert
  71. pitch
  72. polish
  73. portmanteau
  74. predate
  75. present
  76. proceeds
  77. progress
  78. project
  79. protest
  80. purpose
  81. putting
  82. quail
  83. quarry
  84. read
  85. rebel
  86. recall
  87. recap
  88. recess
  89. record
  90. redress
  91. refund
  92. refuse
  93. regress
  94. reject
  95. relapse
  96. remake
  97. research
  98. resent
  99. retake
  100. retard
  101. retract
  102. rock
  103. rose
  104. round
  105. row
  106. second
  107. sewer
  108. sink
  109. skied
  110. sow
  111. subject
  112. survey
  113. suspect
  114. sign
  115. spirit
  116. spoke
  117. story
  118. tear
  119. theory
  120. tie
  121. train
  122. transfer
  123. transform
  124. transplant
  125. transport
  126. transpose
  127. too
  128. type
  129. undercount
  130. update
  131. uplift
  132. upset
  133. venery
  134. watch
  135. wave
  136. wind
  137. wound
  138. yard
  139. lit
  140. dab

Polysemes[edit]

Polysemes are words that at one time described an activity but later acquired other meanings as well, such as those engaged in the activity, the product of the activity, the place or time where the activity occurs or a verb concerning the activity. Here are some examples:

See also[edit]

Wiktionary
Wiktionary has a category on English heteronyms

External links[edit]