Wacky Word Wednesday #9: Discreet vs. Discrete; Loath vs. Loathe

“Whatever you write, write like you.”
– R.J. Tomlin

Good morning everyone! Welcome to our ninth Wacky Word Wednesday! Today’s post is about discreet vs. discrete and loath vs. loathe. These tricky words confuse writers in their meanings and spellings. Shall we begin?

Discrete: adjective. Detached from others; separate.

Example:

There are six discrete chapters to the textbook.
Two discrete homework assignments are due by Friday.

Discreet: adjective. Cautious about one’s conduct or speech.

Example:

He was discreet in his mannerisms. Her discreet tone of voice was serious. 

Let’s stop here for a moment. Look at the words again:

Discrete

Discreet

Notice that the T is the letter moving around. That’s a clever way to remember these words.

Loath: adjective. Unwilling; reluctant.

Example:

I was loath to leave her alone. He was loath to admit his mistake.

Loathe: verb. To feel intense disagreement or disgust.

Example:

The child loathed eating his Brussel sprouts. He loathes driving in rush hour traffic.

The easiest way to remember loath vs. loathe is this:

Loathe is a verb. As is clothe and bathe. The ending, t-h-e, is what they have in common.

That’s all I have for you today. Happy Wednesday!

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