‘Especially’ vs ‘Specially’: What’s the difference? Sometimes, just one letter can change the meaning of a word, but this can make things all the more confusing. Knowing when to use a proper version of the word can help your writing look more sophisticated and help you avoid simple mistakes. Let’s take a look at just how much one letter can change a word’s definition.
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Aside from the obvious one-letter distinction, what is the difference between ‘Especially’ vs ‘Specially’? Both are adverbs that define something that is singled out, but they are singled out in specific ways.
Note: An adverb is a word or phrase that modifies an adjective or verb expressing a relation of place, time, or manner.
This may seem confusing because the words appear almost interchangeable, but they have their own meanings and their own proper uses. But simply comparing these words to each other doesn’t help complete the picture. We need to dive deeper.
Let’s take a closer look at ‘Especially’ vs ‘Specially.’
According to the Dictionary, ‘Specially’ is an adverb which means:
The root of the word ‘Specially’ comes from the Latin origin ‘speciālis’ which means “pertaining to a particular kind.” This helps show that the origin links directly to the word but also gives us a glimpse of how ‘Especially’ can seem similar.
Given that writing isn’t the only time we use words, it is very important that we give you the tools to navigate all linguistic scenarios. This obviously includes speech, and words like ‘Especially’ vs ‘Specially’ that only have a one-letter difference mean pronunciation is key. More accurately, enunciation is key because emphasizing the “e” at the beginning of ‘Especially’ can be the difference between understanding which word is being used. Since the distinction between the meaning of these two words is relatively narrow, knowing which word is being said is crucial.
So let’s look at how to say these words properly.
Use this phonetic spelling of ‘Especially’ as a guide:
Use this phonetic spelling of ‘Specially’ as a guide:
When words sound similar and have related functions within a sentence, knowing which one to use can be tricky when you’re trying to think on the fly. In moments like that, it can be helpful to draw on other real-world examples that clue you in as to where and how words may appear. Here are some sample sentences that provide context for ‘Especially’ vs ‘Specially’ — read them over, then once you feel more confident, try writing some sample sentences of your own as practice.
When one letter makes all the difference in a word, you have to be extra mindful of when and how to use it. Words like ‘Especially’ vs ‘Specially’ can be extra confusing given that they sound similar and have relatively similar functions that make them easy to mix up. But, if you focus on enunciating in conversation and being deliberate with context, you’ll master these words in no time.
Want a review? Here’s a recap of what was covered:
These two words are not the only ones that differ by just one letter. Be sure to investigate other confusing words to continue building your vocabulary and expanding your knowledge of the English language. And remember, context is key!
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