What's the difference between pair and pare?
Do you have any idea about the difference between pair and pare?
The difference between pair and pare can hardly be noticed in spoken English. However, these two confusing words have different meanings. You can differentiate them when you use them in writing. One difference is that pair is a noun but pare is a verb.
However, when you say these words, you will never realize these words are not the same because they sound similar. Words that have similar sounds are called homophones in English. There are hundreds of homophones in English but today, we are going to talk more about the difference between pair and pare.
Pair is a Noun
In English grammar, the word pair is a noun. Every day, we always use the word pair and say, a pair of shoes, a pair of socks, a pair of scissors, etc. The word pair means two persons or items, similar in form or function and matched. Clearly, if you do not use pair and pare in a sentence, you will not know their usage and function.
I need to buy a new pair of shoes.
The pair of hunters enjoyed hunting in the forest.
Rose and Jack are a lovely pair.
We also use a pair of for something that is made of two items joined together.
A pair of glasses
A pair of scissors
Note: We always follow “A pair of” with a plural noun. E.g. ‘A pair of shoes’, NOT ‘A pair of shoe’.
Pair is a Verb
In English grammar, the word pair is a noun but pare is a verb. This word is not very common to a lot of ESL learners, especially for beginner students. Grammatically, pare is a transitive verb which means to remove the outer covering or skin of something with a knife or similar instrument.
I pare the skin of vegetables using a peeler.
She pared the dough of the pie before putting it inside the oven.
Pair is a Fruit
Besides pair and pare, one word is also read the same, and that is pear, which is a kind of fruit. Pear is an edible fruit similar to an apple but elongated towards the stem. This juicy fruit has the same pronunciation which gets ESL students to mix up the spelling of these homophones. So, whenever you encounter these words next time, always remember to have the same pronunciation. It’s funny because the words pair and pare and pear sound exactly just the same.
In conclusion, we can say that pair, pare, and pear has the same sounds. They are homophones. Despite having the same sound, these words have different meanings.
Pair means two persons or items, similar in form or function, and matched.
Pare means to remove the outer covering or skin of something with a knife or similar instrument.
Pear is similar to an apple but elongated towards the stem.
Interested to learn more about Homophones? Find out the difference between the words Sow and Sew.