Wrong Word Wednesday #71

Every week I demonstrate an example of poor English where a different word is used from the word intended. Usually, this creates a grammatically incorrect sentence and sometimes it sounds amusing, other times it sounds embarrassing. Unfortunately, the mistake is so pervasive that we all do it and such errors are usually made by those who should know better – journalists working for national or global media outlets such as newspapers and television.

This is the last one for the time being as my list has finally (after almost two years) run out! I expect to post some sporadically from time to time, but there will not be one most weeks now.

e.g. / i.e.

Many people get this wrong and I think that some think that i.e. is just a posher version of e.g. It’s not – the two are quite different.

e.g. – is latin for exempli gratia. You use this when referring to an example of something. “I want to go to a Greek island this year – e.g. Rhodes, Thera, Kos, Crete

i.e. – is also latin, meaning id est. We use this when clarifying or to add emphasis, in other words. “Your item will be dispatched within three working days from the date of your order, i.e. placing your order on a Friday means it will not be dispatched until the following Wednesday.”


5 thoughts on “Wrong Word Wednesday #71

  1. Andrea Freedman

    I did not know this; thank you, I will not make this mistake again.

    1. I will try not to but I’m sure I will make it from time to time!

  2. Sabina

    Yes! This one drives me crazy, when people use them interchangeably.

    1. It’s one of those things we learn at school and then quickly forget, I think.

  3. Peter Chabanowich


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