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Coax vs cokes

  • Coax  and cokes are commonly confused words that are pronounced in the same way but are spelled differently and have different meanings, which makes them homophones. Homophones are a group of words with different spellings, the same pronunciations, and different meanings. Homophones exist because of our ever-changing English language and are a challenge for those who wish to learn to speak English. It can be difficult to learn how to spell different words that sound the same, and homophones are commonly misused words. Said aloud, the difference is less important, because the words are pronounced the same. The way the spelling and definitions differ can be confusing even to native English speakers when attempting to learn vocabulary correctly. Proper pronunciation of spoken English may help the listener distinguish between homophones and understand the correct spelling; the words affect-effect are a good example, but the word pairs to, too and two, bridle and bridal, creek and creak, hoard and horde, toed and towed, or horse and hoarse, are indistinguishable from each other and are easily confused and are commonly misused. Pronunciation is usually more ambiguous, as English pronunciation may vary according to dialect, and English spelling is constantly evolving. Pronunciation may change even though the spelling doesn’t, producing two words that are pronounced in the same manner but have different meanings such as night and knight. Phonological spelling and spelling rules do not always work, and most people avoid misspelling by studying vocabulary words from spelling lists, enhancing their literacy skills through spelling practice, and learning words in English by studying a dictionary of the English language. English words are also spelled according to their etymologies rather than their sound. For instance, the word threw is derived from the Old English word thrawan, and the word through came from the Old English word thurh. Homophones are confusing words and are commonly misspelled words because of the confusion that arises from words that are pronounced alike but have very different usage and etymology. A spell checker will rarely find this type of mistake in English vocabulary, so do not rely on spell check but instead, learn to spell. Even a participant in a spelling bee like the National Spelling Bee will ask for an example of a homophone in a sentence, so that she understands which word she is to spell by using context clues. Homophones are often used in wordplay like puns. We will examine the different meanings of the homophonic words coax and cokes, the word origins of the terms, and some examples of their English usage in sentences.

     

    Coax means to gently urge someone to do something, to influence someone or something in subtle and kinds ways or with flattery. Coax is a transitive verb, which is a verb that takes an object. Related words are coaxes, coaxed, coaxing. Coax may also refer to a coaxial cable. The word coax is derived from an obsolete definition of the word coke from the 1500s: simpleton.

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    Cokes refers to specific types of coal and is the third person singular form of the verb coke, which means to convert into coke. Related words are coke, coked, coking. When capitalized, as in Cokes, it is the plural form of the beverage, Coke, a commercial cola. The word coke is probably derived from the Middle English word, colke, a word that means core.

    Examples

    CEOs are using their higher profile in the public arena to coax travelers back and call for less stringent global travel restrictions. (Crain’s Cleveland Business)

    Indeed, Loroupe met with Lobalu in Switzerland seven months after he quit the team and tried to coax him to return to Kenya so he could run in the Tokyo Olympics, according to Lobalu. (Time Magazine)

    The coking businesses mainly include the production and distribution of metallurgy cokes and forging cokes. (Reuters)

    These ranged from chocolate malts, which were Frances Lopez Simon’s favorite, cherry Cokes, which Mary B. Hebert and Jackie Hargrave Dugas touted as the best they’d ever had. (Daily Iberian)


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