Commonly confused sound-alike words: Vols. U-Z

Though not all the letters in this span are represented, here are 10 sets of homonyms and second cousins, one letter removed, that can perplex writers

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Untitled Document Having come to the end of the alphabet with my series of “words often confused with one another,” I find myself hard-pressed to come up with a final set of 10 for the remaining letters, U-Z.

I can’t think of any for U, X or Z, but here are some for V, W, and Y:

1. vane/vain/vein

All three sound alike and speakers know what they mean when they say them. The confusion arises with the spellings.

Incorrect: A cupola sat astride the angled wedge of the rooftop, sporting a beautiful gold colored weather vain.
Correct: A cupola sat astride the angled wedge of the rooftop, sporting a beautiful gold colored weather vane.

Incorrect: If we cut one of our vains, what chance do we have to live?
Correct: If we cut one of our veins, what chance do we have to live?

vane noun: a blade that rotates
vain adjective: 1. hopeless: “She continues to harbor a vain desire to write a novel that will make her rich.” 2. having an excessively high opinion of one’s own appearance, attainments, qualities, or possessions: “He is especially vain about his hair.”

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