Dam vs. Damn – What’s the Difference?

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Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

Homophones have the same pronunciations but different meanings. Damn and dam are two examples of homophones and even I get them mixed up all the time when I’m writing.

Is it dam you or damn you? Let’s discuss the meaning of dam and damn in this post. I’ll also show you examples of the two words in sentences.

Dam or Damn – What’s the Difference?

Aside from spelling, the main difference between dam and damn is their meaning. Dam is a noun that means a structure blocking water from passing. Meanwhile, damn is a verb that means to condemn something or someone.

Dam vs Damn ngram
Ngram trend of Dam vs Damn.

Dam Meaning

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A dam is simply the barrier that holds back water and restricts it from an area. It also serves as a reservoir for electricity and water supply. I actually have a post-it on my writing wall that says, “Hoover Dam” as a reminder of how to properly use the term.

Is Dam a Curse Word?

Dam is not a curse word. It’s inaccurate to write “dam you” when trying to express hatred toward someone or something.

How Do You Use Dam in a Sentence?

Below are examples of the word dam in a sentence.

  • The waves crashed against the dam.
  • Monarchs used to build dams to keep the sea away from their castles.
  • The dam is 23 feet wide and 82 feet deep.

Damn Meaning

Damn is a verb that means to condemn or show disapproval. This word is synonymous with censure, criticize, or attack.

What Type of Word is Damn?

Many people wonder, is damn considered a curse word? Damn can be an interjection used when one is annoyed or angry about someone or something.

How Do You Use Damn in a Sentence?

Here are some examples of damn in a sentence.

  • You’ll be damned for your poor reasoning.
  • You’re damn right I will fix this issue.
  • “Damn those men,” John cursed with bitterness and grief.

Is it Damn or Damned?

Damn and damned can be used interchangeably nowadays. But in formal writing, damn is a verb or interjection, while damned is an adjective.

Dam vs. Damn Summary

Dam and damn have the same pronunciations but different meanings. This post has shown you their difference and some examples of using the two words in sentences.

Remember that dam is a noun meaning a colossal structure that blocks water. Damn is a verb that expresses hate toward someone or something. Try challenging yourself to a quick test below.