'Die' vs 'Dice': What's the Difference?

By Carly Forsaith, updated on January 26, 2023

If you're wondering whether there's a difference between 'die' vs 'dice,' you've come to the right place. In this article, you'll learn the meaning of each word and how to use them.

In short, 'die' is a singular noun and 'dice' is a plural noun. However, it is acceptable to use 'dice' for both the singular and plural forms in British English.

What's the Difference Between 'Die' vs 'Dice'?

Firstly, both 'die' and 'dice' can be nouns or verbs.

As a verb, 'to die' means to come to the end of your life.
As a verb, 'to dice' means to cut something into small pieces.

But these definitions aren't relevant to this article. Here, we are talking about the small cubes used to play games.

What Does 'Die' Mean?

A die is considered to be the singular noun that identifies a small cube imprinted with six numbers that you throw when playing a game or placing a bet. They're usually made of plastic or wood.

What Does 'Dice' Mean?

Dice is the plural noun form of 'die.' This can be a little confusing because it doesn't follow the conventional pluralization rules, which usually dictate adding an -s to the end of a noun to make it plural.

That's because it's an irregular noun. You can't say 'dices.'

More and more commonly, 'dice' is used for both the singular and plural forms, and it is already officially recognized as both in British English by reputable British dictionaries.

Pronunciation: How to Pronounce 'Die' and 'Dice'

So how do you pronounce these words? Let's start by looking at the International Phonetic Alphabet spelling, which helps us know how the letters sound. The IPA spells 'die' like this:


And it spells 'dice' like this:


As for how they sound when you pronounce them, this is how 'die' sounds:


And 'dice' sounds like this:


Examples of 'Die' and 'Dice' in Sentences

Now let's take a look at some examples of these words being used in a sentence.

Sometimes your whole life can change at the flip of a coin or the roll of a die.

A game of Monopoly comes with two dice.

His specialty is carving old-fashioned-looking dice out of wood.

We need die-shakers to play Backgammon.

Is this game played with dice or chips?

Concluding Thoughts on 'Die' and 'Dice'

So there you have it, 'die' is traditionally singular but becoming more and more common as a plural noun, too. 'Dice' is always a plural noun.

To learn to differentiate more words like this, head to the Confusing Words section of our blog.

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Written By:
Carly Forsaith
Carly Forsaith is one of the lead freelance writers for WritingTips.org. Carly is a copywriter who has been writing about the English language for over 3 years. Before that, she was a teacher in Thailand, helping people learn English as a second language. She is a total grammar nerd and spends her time spotting language errors on signs and on the internet.

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