Rot vs. Wrought

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Rot and wrought are two words that are pronounced similarly but are spelled differently and have different meanings. They are homophones. We will look at the definitions of the words rot and wrought, where these terms come from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Rot means to decompose, to decay due to bacterial action. Rot may be used as a noun or a verb, related words are rots, rotted, rotting, rotten. The word rot is also used in British English to mean teasing or nonsensical talk. Rot is derived from the Old English word rotian which means to putrefy.

Wrought means metal shaped through the action of hammering or beating. Wrought may also mean fashioned with care, made in a particular way. Wrought iron is a type of iron that is durable yet malleable, the Eiffel Tower is constructed from a type of wrought iron. Wrought is an adjective. The word wrought is derived from Middle English word werken, which means work.


It fuels the populist surge and the sense of rot that discredits governments and politicians in widely different countries and cultures. (The Huffington Post)

Ehrenberg said the tree that fell was old and rotted, and the incident did not appear to be weather-related. (The Herald-Palladium)

When he was 53, he strung a wire along the B&O railroad, then using his code to tap out “What hath God wrought” from Washington, D.C., to Baltimore, Maryland, inaugurating the age of the telegraph, which led to the age of the telephone, then to the Internet, then to the smartphone. (National Geographic Magazine)

Sforno offers a softly lit Tuscan atmosphere, replete with exposed brick walls, wrought iron gates, wooden shutters, honed travertine tile and a stone fountain bubbling gently in the center of the dining room. (Boulder Weekly)

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