Words that sound similar are called homophones. "Bare" and "Bear" sound exactly the same when spoken; however, they mean very different things. Sometimes homophones can cause a great deal of confusion in spoken English, causing you to believe you've misheard someone!
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, there are at least a quarter of a million different English words, so it is absolutely no surprise to find that some of these words sound exactly the same, even though they have different meanings, different histories and different spellings. Words like this are known as "homophones".
You can use homophones for word play, for jokes and even for more serious purposes in your creative writing. Ready for another Christmas cracker joke? What should a Valentine card given to a sheep say? I love ewe........
Expand your English knowledge with this quiz.