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Word Usage

Here is a list of commonly misused words or word phrases. The definitions of these words or word phrases may come from Cambridge Dictionaries Online, MacMillan English Dictionary for Advanced Learners or Oxford Dictionaries Online.

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you, your

Which should you use, you or your ? The pronoun you can function as a noun. The possessive determiner your cannot function as a noun. Incorrect: How...


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you're, your

Which should you use, you’re or your ? You’re is the contracted form of you are . Your is a possessive determiner and refers to the...


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wreaked, wrought

Which should you use, wreaked or wrought ? The verb wreak means to inflict or cause. Wreak is a regular verb; wreaked , not wrought , is the past and...


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would have, would of

Which should you use, would have or would of ? The preposition of may not be used with would to mean would have. Incorrect: I would of done it...


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worth

Adjectives do not often take an object. Worth is an adjective that does. Correct: The house is worth half a million dollars. Correct: Life is worth...


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worse, worser

Which should you use, worse or worser ? Worse is the comparative form of bad . Worse is used with than to compare things. Worser is an improper...


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wool gathering, woolgathering

Which should you use, wool gathering or woolgathering ? Woolgathering is a noun meaning daydreaming; wool gathering is a misspelling. Incorrect: He...


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without a doubt, without doubt, without doubts,without the doubt

Which should you use, without a doubt , without doubt , without doubts , or without the doubt ? The phrase without a doubt or without doubt means...


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withhold, withold

Which should you use, withhold or withold ? The verb withhold means to refuse to give something or to keep back something. Withold is a spelling...


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with regard to, with regards to

Which should you use, with regard to or with regards to ? The phrase with regard to means in relation to; with regards to is incorrect. Incorrect:...


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