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homophone

[hom-uh-fohn, hoh-muh-]
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noun
  1. Phonetics. a word pronounced the same as another but differing in meaning, whether spelled the same way or not, as heir and air.
  2. a written element that represents the same spoken unit as another, as ks, a homophone of x in English.
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Origin of homophone

First recorded in 1615–25; back formation from homophonous
Can be confusedhomograph homonym homophone (see synonym study at homonym)

Synonyms

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See homonym.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for homophone

homophone

noun
  1. one of a group of words pronounced in the same way but differing in meaning or spelling or both, as for example bear and bare
  2. a written letter or combination of letters that represents the same speech sound as another``ph'' is a homophone of ``f'' in English
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for homophone

n.

1843, from the adjective homophone (1620s), from Greek homos "same" (see homo- (1)) + phone "sound" (see fame (n.)). Related: Homophonic.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper