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10 memory aids to help prevent misused words

Do you have trouble remembering which word to use in certain situations? Plenty of words are similar and easy to confuse -- and that can make you sound stupid even if what you've written is brilliant. Here are some tricks for choosing the right word.

Do you have trouble remembering which word to use in certain situations? Plenty of words are similar and easy to confuse -- and that can make you sound stupid even if what you've written is brilliant. Here are some tricks for choosing the right word.


Using words correctly in our writing is crucial to maintaining credibility. Too often, though, we misuse words. Here are 10 of the most commonly misused words, along with memory aids to help you keep them straight.

Note: This information is also available as a PDF download.

#1: Principal / principle

The principal of a school is the head of that school, in other words, the main person of the school. Likewise, the principal of a loan is the main portion of the loan. Because the principal of a school is responsible for our education, and loans help us meet our needs, both are our pals. On the other hand, a principle is an idea or a concept, and both of these words, like principle, have an e in them.

#2: Council / counsel

A council is a group of people who make decisions. Counsel, as a noun, refers to a person who gives (typically legal) advice. The last two letters of counsel are e and l, which appear at the beginning of legal.

#3: Loose / lose

When something is loose, it is still there, but not as tightly fastened. A loose button doesn't stay as close to your shirt or jacket as it should -- in other words, it's farther away. Loose, because it has two instances of the letter o, is longer than lose. But it takes only an instant to lose something, therefore lose is shorter than loose.

#4: Compliment / complement

To compliment someone is to praise that person. Both of these words have the letter i near the middle. To complement something is to make it complete. Both of these words begin with comple.

#5: Capital / capitol

The capital of a state or a country is the city where the main functions of its government are located. Main has the letter a, as does capital, at the end of the word.

A capitol is the building where government officials meet. Such a building typically has a round dome, or rotunda -- similar in shape to the letter o that is in capitol.

#6: To / too / two

When we go to a place, we start from one location and typically end up in the desired location. Think of the t in to as your start and the o as your ending.

Too refers to an excessive amount of something. Here, too has too many instances of the letter o.

Two refers to the number. The last two letters, wo, are the first two letters of won. This word, in turn, sounds like the number one, which immediately precedes two.

#7: Bankrupt / bankruptcy, insolvent / insolvency, pregnant / pregnancy

In each pair of words, the adjective form (bankrupt company, insolvent organization, pregnant woman) is shorter than the noun form (a company in bankruptcy, or insolvency; a woman with a difficult pregnancy). Adjectives modify nouns. In other words, adjectives are merely the window dressing, while the noun is the main act. A noun can exist by itself, but an adjective can't.

If you were to see, for example, George Strait in concert, you wouldn't see him right away. There would be one or more warmup performers preceding him (adjectives), usually with a smaller set of songs and a smaller audience. However, Mr. Strait, as the headliner (noun), would have the larger audience and the larger set of songs.

Caution: Bankruptcy can be a noun, but it can also be an adjective, as in bankruptcy court.

#8: E.g. / i.e.

E.g. means for example, while i.e. means that is. E.g. and example both begin with e. The phrase that is and the abbreviation i.e. both have the letter i.

#9: Imminent / eminent

Something that is imminent will happen soon, in other words, immediately.

An eminent person or idea is one that stands out from the rest. That is, it has made an exit from the rest. Both eminent and exit begin with e.

#10: Allude / elude

To allude to something means to refer to it. If you did so while speaking, such an action would be oral. The last two letters of oral are the first two letters of allude.

To elude someone means to escape capture or recognition. Escape and elude both begin with e.

About

Calvin Sun is an attorney who writes about technology and legal issues for TechRepublic.

80 comments
susanjane9
susanjane9

Why didn't you include practice/practise?

adam.orita
adam.orita

Discrete - constituting a separate thing. Note that the e's are separated by the t. Discreet - careful to avoid embarrassment when dealing with secret or private matters. You caught the two ee's together.

nlfaith
nlfaith

what about: assure, ensure, insure weather, whether

Histrion2
Histrion2

You have imminent and eminent, but what about immanent? (From m-w.com: 1 : indwelling , inherent 2 : being within the limits of possible experience or knowledge ? compare transcendent )

M.W.H.
M.W.H.

"Lose has lost an 'o'" from Ms. Emery, my Grade 6 teacher. Before bemoaning the current use of the English language, we should all remember that what we think is 'proper' English today has evolved from what 'proper' English was centuries ago. Shakespeare would roll over in his grave if he heard today's proper English. From the English department at www.bathcsd.org anon?right now, OR 'I come right away'??. 'Anon, good nurse! Speak!' art?are, OR skill??'Thou art dead; no physician?s art can save you.' dost or doth?does or do??'Dost thou know the time?' ere?before??'We must leave ere daybreak.' fain?gladly??'I fain would bake Mr. Love cookies if I could get an A.' fie?an exclamation of dismay or disgust??'You cheated? Fie upon it!' OR 'Fie! Are you mad?' hark?listen??. 'Hark to the owl,' OR 'Hark! The herald angels sing!' hence?away?..'Get thee hence, beggar!' OR 'We must hence before the army arrives.' hie?hurry??'Hie thee hence, or lose your life!' hither?here?..'Come hither, young lad.' thither?there??'Look to the east?thither doth the sun arise.' hath?has??? 'He hath killed many a man.' OR 'He hath a horse.' ho?hey (roughly equivalent). 'Lucius, ho!' [Brutus calling his servant] mark?pay attention to??.. 'Mark my words.' marry?indeed??'He says I should respond quickly; marry, I want to.' pray/prithee?a polite way of asking something??'I prithee answer the question.' saucy?cheeky; sassy??'Hence, thou saucy boy!' sirrah?a term of address used for inferiors??'Sirrah, bring the letter over here.' thee?you??'When will I see thee next?' thou?you??'Thou art a villain.' thy?your??'Thy name is more hateful than thy face.' whence?from where??.. 'Whence came that news?' OR 'Return to whence you came.' wherefore?why??'Wherefore dost thou leave?' OR 'Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?' - [As in, 'why can?t you be someone else, whom my family doesn?t hate?']

Rick_from_BC
Rick_from_BC

This one used to fox me, but it turned out to be so simple: fl"OUT" the law, just like OUTlaws do. This gives me a chance to flaunt my knowledge (which may make my AUNT proud).

k.m.denver
k.m.denver

Thank you for a good refresher. Hopefully you can write a whole article how 99% of folks misuse and abuse the word THAT.....instead of who, which etc...

onbliss
onbliss

In USA I have seen people, with English as native language, use the word 'I' instead of the word 'me'. It is amusing; but probably this is how languages evolve.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Since an apostrophe is used in both contractions and possessives, how do we keep straight which is which? I don't have any trouble with any of the words in the original article; this pair runs me nuts on a regular basis.

slraymond70
slraymond70

Another commonly made misuse is then/than, recently seen in a tech article. Do the schools not teach grammar any more? I received an excellent education in my high school English class. From that I received credit for two college classes through CLEP.

darpoke
darpoke

Speaking as one who benefited from a Classical education (I took Latin and some Ancient Greek at school), I find I have always drawn on certain basic principles (note usage!) when determining correct word usage - or sometimes in trying to decipher an unfamiliar word from first principles. For example, the vowel prefixes 'a-' and 'e-' both stem from the Latin origins of the English language. Words beginning 'a-' often have a connotation of 'towards, in the direction of', whereas those beginning 'e-' often have a connotation of 'away from'. Contrast, for example, the words 'affluent', meaning 'having a great deal of money' (picture income flowing toward the person in question) and 'effluent', meaning 'liquid waste or sewage' (which by definition is flowing from a source of excretion). Sorry for the poor taste of example, having written it the images are less than pleasant, but I feel it accomplishes the task I hoped it would. This technique helped me remember the difference between afferent and efferent nerves for one of my modules at uni. It's the same technique I apply to all my tech-related learning: I find the stronger the understanding one gains of the basic principles of a concept, the easier it is to apply those to more abstract, higher concepts, and to reason from first principles. This not only makes it easier to remember key facts, but also aids in understanding new ones. @sue1anne, I think the problem lies in having an existing system for keeping track of such differences - anything that rocks the status quo, even if it only serves to confirm what you already know, only confuses what was a settled issue. I experienced much the same thing myself. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

sue1anne
sue1anne

I don't disagree with this being posted, however I didn't find it helpful and it confused me more. Possibly because I already remember the differences and the explanations just muddled it up for me personally.

DaveSlash
DaveSlash

I agree that the items listed are frequently misused, and this article can be VERY useful. Another one I see frequently is affect vs. effect.(Affect is verb, and effect is a noun.) It gets confusing because the definition of "affect" is "to have an effect on". -- DaveSlash

robb
robb

What about "affect" and "effect"

Vandy-SJ
Vandy-SJ

I applaud TechRepublic for providing these articles and blogs. I also applaud Calvin for his efforts to help people with their careers and communications. I subscribe to TechRepublic for good reason. Thank you Calvin for your response. Your article has helped many readers, no doubt. I find it a sad statement about our US education system if high school graduates can only be expected to read and write at a 7th grade level. I have written for audiences that are not expected to read and write above a 7th grade education (e.g., US military non-commissioned). I have some experience writing at this grade level, but I typically don't expect to encounter them here. Sorry, my mistake. Since my high school graduation, my work in college, the military, and many years in the technology industry as a writer, programmer, engineer, and manager required that I write everyday. Maybe I've had more 'practice' at writing in English than other people. I recently learned that several college students turned in research papers that included colloquial 'texting' shorthand within their papers, and these students felt the shorthand was universally acceptable. Their professor didn't. I believe these students each received a failing grade on their papers, as they should. Our newspapers, magazines, US-published books, and online news services - including TechRepublic.com - are still written in proper English. Though these entities do have the advantage of using editors to check for spelling and punctuation, most authors do practice good English grammar in their writing. I think we all should. Admittedly, my expectations were too high for this article. Keep a dictionary on your desk, and use it often. I'd hope we are becoming more literate, not less literate.

Vandy-SJ
Vandy-SJ

Anyone with a high school diploma that reads and writes in the English language daily should find this advice unnecessary and insulting. I can see that someone who practices English as a second language may find this useful advice. I think it is inappropriate for TechRepublic to consider submitting this article. The author and editor(s) should stay focused on technology topics.

zgozvrm
zgozvrm

I believe that in the US, "practise" has fallen completely out of use. In fact, when I typed it, my spell checker immediately complained. So for Americans, it's not a matter of which one to use in given situation (the original intent of this thread), but a matter of which one is correct and which one is not.

ecooper12
ecooper12

Another maddening example. "Contact Joe or myself if you have questions." versus "Contact Joe or me if you have questions." or "Contact Joe or I if you have questions." Take the other person out of the sentence to see if it makes sense, e.g., "Contact me if you have questions."

techrepublic
techrepublic

IT'S is a contraction for IT IS or IT HAS ITS is a possessive pronoun We don't use apostrophes in English with possessive pronouns as we do with possessive nouns. It's a dog's life. That is John's car. That is his car. That is its life. So basically just place ITS in the list with HIS, HERS, OURS, THEIRS, YOURS

JimTheEngineer
JimTheEngineer

When you use "it's" or "its" try substituting "it is" or "its own" - if the sentence still makes sense, you've got it.

mr_bandit
mr_bandit

it's is short for "it is" or "it has" - it's been good to see you - it's good to see you - it's about to blow down and go boom its is possessive - something about the object (an aspect of the object) - its green cover is bent - its frammitz went blooy all over the glarf http://www.stormloader.com/garyes/its/#top has two tests: 1) If you can replace it[']s in your sentence with it is or it has, then your word is it's; otherwise, your word is its. 2) Its is the neuter version of his and her. Try plugging her into your sentence where you think its belongs. If the sentence still works grammatically (if not logically) then your word is indeed its. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITS states its, the possessive adjective and possessive pronoun form of the personal pronoun it it's, a contraction of it is or it has

SAStarling
SAStarling

Aaaahh... the fresh smell of etymology in the morning! LOVE it!

bbyrnes424
bbyrnes424

I eagarly read the posting and all the comments HOPING my affect-effect confusion would be put to rest! No such luck! Both can be verbs and both can be nouns! So, I am one of those "uneducated, idiots" who knows I don't know which to use. What do I do? I avoid them! This is one of those things you either get or don't get. I am smart enough to know I don't get it, so I work around it!

ecooper12
ecooper12

I totally agree. I pretty much stroke out every time I hear or read someone substitute "impact" for "affect," as in, "This impacts us all." It seems like everybody has jumped on this bandwagon, from business to media, all of whom should know better.

yogi_john
yogi_john

I was not aware that affect was also a noun, as SAStarling points out. I do know that both are verbs: Heating affects the temperature. Heating effects a rise in temperature. For these uses perhaps think of affect being ambiguous about the change while effect is specific. The first vowels correspond. My dictionary indicates: As a verb affect is most commonly used in the sense of "to influence". Effect means to bring about or execute. John

LynetteCarter
LynetteCarter

Affect begins with the letter "A" which comes first in the alphabet, so affect happens first. The "effect (of a process or event, for example), comes at the end. Effect and end both begin with the letter "E". Or, alphabetically, affect comes before effect.

jruth
jruth

The affect/effect dilemma is frequently resolved by avoiding it altogether. Hence the popularity of "impact" or worse, "impactful."

fabiogilr
fabiogilr

I've seen effect being used as a verb and affect as an adjective. I always use affect as the verb, but many people use effect as if they were using affect. And that really confuses me, being English my second language.

Calvin T Sun
Calvin T Sun

Lol you're right about "affect" and "effect." That's actually a more common error than some of the ones I listed. Problem is, I couldn't come up with a memory trick to tell them apart. Thanks for reading and for commenting.

SAStarling
SAStarling

Dave: Affect can be a noun, as well. A "flat affect" on a patient means that they have an emotionless expression, basically. I was a medical transcriptionist for 15 years, and this was always one of my favorite words. I've always loved words, and I hate to hear or read the English language eviscerated. That's probably why I don't text - I HATE to use the letter "u" when I mean "you."

wccordes1
wccordes1

Why didn't he mention which one refers to money?

boxfiddler
boxfiddler

[i]Our newspapers, magazines, US-published books, and online news services... are still written in proper English.[/i] My 'proper English' is far from the best. That said, there hasn't been a website (including TR) that I have visited in 10 years that was free from grammatical or typographical error. I gave up our newspaper 10 years ago because it was so rife with error. I'm an educator. As we oldsters die off we leave behind the near and functional illiterate to teach the upcoming generations. Classic literature has all but disappeared from public education in favor of politically correct drivel. Hope is not enough to secure a literate future for our children, grandchildren, great grandchildren. etu

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

Anyone who earned a high school diploma... You'd be surprised how many supposedly educated people mess those words up, big time.

SObaldrick
SObaldrick

Program - Sequence of instructions, as in computer program. Programme - A scheduled event, as in television programmme.

wes.schochet
wes.schochet

valuable none the less! You'd be surprised how many people, despite their education level, use these types off words inappropriately. And, like it or not, a lot of IT people are (gasp) non-native English speakers. Teaching these folks the subtleties of the language can be fun and I have always been sincerely thanked for pointing out these types of errors to people new to the English language. (I also tell guys when their fly is open, just whispering ?hey buddy, zip up!? us always appreciated.)

j.calero
j.calero

I think it's easier for native English speakers to confuse this words, because they sound similar, and maybe your mind makes a fake association. I'm a Spanish native speaker and I never confuse the words you are talking about (except i.e and e.g and the similar ones) because in my language they look very similar but their pronunciation is much different.

Geek3001
Geek3001

Standards have changed over the years. And even then, I know a number of people who are good technically, survived old style high school, but are incapable of using proper English in written format.

Calvin T Sun
Calvin T Sun

Hi, I appreciate your comments, even (lol) this first one. More importantly, I appreciate and respect the "stand up" character you've shown in your later posts. All the best.

alan.jackson
alan.jackson

As a Technical Author who has to constantly correct such errors in technical documentation, I believe it is important. Often, architects are so bound up with the technicalities of their subject matter that they often overlook the wordiness of their written output. Spell checker abuse adds to the mix. As an example, an architect had a document heading of Server Rolls, as opposed to his intended heading of Server Roles. There is no doubting his intellect, as a BA Hons degree is the minimum qualification to fill such a position. The younger the architect, the more likely the errors. Is this a symptom of the modern education system?

SObaldrick
SObaldrick

Can someone in the US tell me the difference? Les.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Congratulations on your new position. Will you be moving to Louisville or telecommuting? Much as it might offend you, there's always been more here than technology topics. Articles on professional development and personal presentation are popular, and this falls into that category. Don't like an article? Don't read it; you're not paying for the content. Just because you don't like something doesn't mean others won't find it useful.

IBM 1401
IBM 1401

Anyone with a high school diploma who reads and writes English should know that the appropriate pronoun to refer to a person (anyone) is "who," not "that." I also agree with the poster who said that one doesn't need to read an article that is not of interest. I don't read many of the Tech Republic articles that are on "technology topics," if they are not of interest to me. I offer this mnemonic device to help remember the difference between desert and dessert. My favorite desert is the Sahara (one "S"). My favorite dessert is Strawberry Shortcake (two "S's").

jjheinis
jjheinis

The quality of English education has declined since I went to high school which is earlier than the birthdates of many IT professionals. I think it is worth including here because of this.

SAStarling
SAStarling

...and don't assume (especially these days) that everyone knows these language differences. Everybody could use a refresher now and then, and the way the job market is right now, I'm quite sure a lot of people might appreciate articles like this to brush up on basics before going on job interviews, networking, etc. Never ever assume knowledge is wasteful. You saw the title of the article, and if you didn't want to waste YOUR time, you didn't have to read it. You made a lot of suppositions in your comment that were not correct.

The Scummy One
The Scummy One

even with a high school diploma, some are horrible. And then those that text often, seem to be the worst. I think it is a good topic and commend the writer for the article. however, I do not have a high school diploma, I dropped out and took a GED years later. I guess it all depends on how much one puts into learning, and how much one tries to get by on the grading 'curve'.

boxfiddler
boxfiddler

might - and I do mean might barely - be able to read and write at a 7th grade level. I have to wonder just how employable the functionally illiterate are within the Information Systems/Technology field/age. Add to that, as we age, memory needs a bit of help now and again.

LynetteCarter
LynetteCarter

Even highly educated individuals misuse and confuse words when writing. I receive at least one email per day with errors such as insure/ensure, there/their/they're, s/'s (e.g. server's, possesive, instead of servers, plural). To assume only those with English as a second language would find this useful is what is insulting and inappropriate.

sidekick
sidekick

I agree that to me, most of these seem obvious, but the topic itself is not inappropriate. Good language skills contribute to a successful career. I frequently read career related articles and would like to see them keep coming. BTW, I do have a high school diploma and an A.S. (A few months away from the B.S.), and I always thought that e.g. and i.e. were the same thing.

Calvin T Sun
Calvin T Sun

How is this column any less appropriate than the other ones that deal with grammar and spelling mistakes? This column http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/10things/?m=200809 got 26 "thumbs up" votes. This one http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/10things/?p=320 got 31 votes. All I did was develop mnemonic rules to go with the latter. By the way, I've seen statements from financial institutions that talk about "interest" and "principle." If they can make that mistake, why can't others? Why shouldn't Tech Republic help people avoid such mistakes?

santeewelding
santeewelding

I read and write in English daily. I ought what?

JimTheEngineer
JimTheEngineer

This suggestion is much better than mine! It's -> it is, and its -> his/hers. Thanks!

fabiogilr
fabiogilr

To affect something is to change or influence it, To effect something is a rather formal way of saying `to make it happen'. Confusingly, either may produce an 'effect' or result. ('An affect' is a technical term in psychology.) The stability of the wall was affected by passing lorries. The demolition of the wall was effected by the detonation of a charge of dynamite. The dynamite did not just 'affect' (influence) the demolition of the wall: it caused it.

jruth
jruth

Many a tortured phrase cropped up in the wake of the Nixon administration and the Congressional Watergate hearings. At least that's when I started noticing them. Who can forget "expletive deleted?" Or "at that point time" replacing "then?" Or "at this point in time" replacing "now?" (Thank you John Dean.) One of my favorites is "co-conspirator." That's redundant! "Conspirator" is all you need since conspiracy, by definition, involves more one person. English, well American, ya gotta love it!

Calvin T Sun
Calvin T Sun

That's great. Yes, the alphabetical trick works. Nice job. Thanks.

ecooper12
ecooper12

A pox on anybody who does this.

Bizzo
Bizzo

How about: Affect is the Action, Effect is the End result.

SAStarling
SAStarling

How about this - if "affect" is used as a noun, it refers to a person's facial "appearance." So A is the first letter of each word. ??? Just a suggestion. (I LOVE words!)

santeewelding
santeewelding

I settled it for myself years ago by reminding me that I effect an affect, in which "effect" is the verb, in this case, to bring the affect into being, not merely affecting it. I use it as a red flag, meaning that I stop to sort it out before I speak. I recommend stopping and looking both ways to our original critic. My reply to him, which still stands, had nothing to do with these minutia. It was, "I ought what?" To which I find his reply unsatisfactory.

techrepublic
techrepublic

Isn't that term "affect" in this case a shortened form of the word "affectation" which of course is a noun? "Affect" might be used commonly in psychiatric terms but I still believe it is not a true noun.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

'capitol' is the government building, and that the dome resembles the 'o'. By extension, the one with the 'a' must be money.

Calvin T Sun
Calvin T Sun

Hi, thanks for your post. It's the same issue as with affect/effect: what rule can I come up with? I couldn't come up with one that incorporates the sense of "capital" as money, so I had to leave it alone. If you can come up with something, by all means go for it. Thanks.

techrepublic
techrepublic

I have to disagree. Many non-native speakers of English often have a great deal of trouble with the words in English that are similar like the ones in the original list. I am not trying to criticise you as your grasp of English is so much better than my grasp of Spanish will ever be. Having said that I do have to comment on your comment. You say you never confuse those words but you do seem to have trouble with the words THIS and THESE as shown by the statement "I think it's easier for native English speakers to confuse this words". The pronunciation of THIS and THESE to a Spanish speaker is obviously close enough to make them confusing and these are much plainer words than the original ones in the list. Don't lump all non-native English speakers in the same boat.

Bizzo
Bizzo

Yes. Your probly rite.

mr_bandit
mr_bandit

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/enquire http://www.thefreedictionary.com/inquire To be honest, as a native English speaker, these definitions are confusing to me in the given examples. 'enquire' is a verb, but all the examples use 'inquire', which is listed as a verb transitive. http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/enquire.html states "These are alternative spellings of the same word. ?Enquire? is perhaps slightly more common in the UK, but either is acceptable in the US." The biggie, Oxford, states http://www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq/usage/enquire "The traditional distinction between enquire and inquire is that enquire is to be used for general senses of 'ask', while inquire is reserved for uses meaning 'make a formal investigation'. In practice, however, enquire (and enquiry) is more common in British English while inquire (and inquiry) is more common in US English, but otherwise there is little discernible distinction in the way the words are used." This seems to match the examples given in the free dictionary. And ... I have a hard time remembering the difference between ie and eg (and *what* is it with the silly periods? I know each is an abbreviation of a Latin term, but c'mon - they are *so* vestigial && last millennium!

Glenn from Iowa
Glenn from Iowa

"S's," because it is desirable. Even if you have a favorite desert, I doubt you would want to wander in it long. Dessert is definitely more desirable that the desert, which is why it gets more "S's." And yes I know those on a diet may want to avoid the desserts, but I still assert that desserts are more desirable than a desert! :-)

santeewelding
santeewelding

Be careful with age card, though. There are some here whose first memories are of the earth cooling.

john3347
john3347

Sounds like Vandy may have gotten his/her toes stepped on. Correct use of whatever language one is speaking or writing is important. These little tips to help all of us be aware of correct language usage is both helpful and appropriate in this forum. Thank you.

SObaldrick
SObaldrick

As I remember the words being used in the UK: Inquiry - is a body that asks questions. Enquiry - is act of asking questions. So to inquire would be the act of body making the investigation. To enquire would be asking a question. (Subtle difference really.) I think that the reason that enquire is more common in the UK, is because its definition would make a more commonly used word. Les.

SObaldrick
SObaldrick

I think I'll take a desert right now. Les.

techrepublic
techrepublic

i.e. is short for the latin "id est" which basically means "that is"

ecooper12
ecooper12

I don't know if that's true or not, I'm too lazy to look it up right now, but I'm just sayin'...

john3347
john3347

santeewelding, Thank you. By you giving the origin of these abbreviations, I can now remember which is which. I have always avoided the use of these abbreviations because I could not remember which meant what.

m.drum
m.drum

I've always remembered it by thinking of example as being spelled eggs-ample (for e.g.), and i.e. as "aye", meaning "yes" it includes everything, (which e.g. does not).