Apportion, portion, and proportion all sound similar, and they also share similar meanings. What does each one mean? We’ll discuss that and more in this article.
The short answer is that ‘apportion’ means ‘to divide.’
‘Portion’ means ‘a share of something.’
‘Proportion’ means the ‘harmonious relation of parts to each other or to the whole.’
The words 'apportion,' 'portion,' and 'proportion,' fall under the category of commonly confused English words. As stated above, each of these words has a slightly definition.
Let’s dive a little deeper into what each word means.
Merriam-Webster defines ‘apportion’ the noun as: “to divide and share out according to a plan (especially: to make a proportionate division or distribution of).”
The word ‘apportion’ has several synonyms, which include:
Merriam-Webster defines ‘portion’ as: “an individual’s part or share of something: such as a share received by gift or inheritance, dowry, enough food especially of one kind to serve one person at one meal)” or “an individual’s lot, fate, or fortune: one’s share of good and evil.”
‘Portion’ as a verb is defined as: “to divide into portions: distribute” or “to allot a dowry to dower.”
The word ‘portion’ has several synonyms, which include:
The definition of ‘proportion’ is: “harmonious relation of parts to each other or to the whole: balance, symmetry” or “a proper or equal share,” according to Merriam-Webster.
The definition of the verb ‘proportion’ is: “to adjust (a part or thing) in size relative to other parts or things” and “to make the parts harmonious or symmetrical.”
The word ‘proportion’ has a few synonyms, which include:
It might be tricky learning how to use these words in a sentence when their definitions are so similar, similar to words like vagabond and podium. But these examples can help guide you as you work on your own sentence.
While the words 'apportion,' 'portion,' and 'proportion,' might have slightly different definitions, they’re not used in exactly the same ways, as illustrated above.
If you find it difficult to differentiate between confusing words, such as unto and weather, check out our collection of articles about confusing words.
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