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Letter Pp Vocabulary Mistakes that Bedevil English Speakers and Learners

Updated on September 26, 2012
When in doubt, always double-check your writing for English vocabulary mistakes.
When in doubt, always double-check your writing for English vocabulary mistakes. | Source

10 Common Vocabulary Errors in Letter Pp

English vocabulary is a fiddly area for both learners of English as a Second Language and native users of English, who are equally prone to making vocabulary mistakes.

This is because the English language has so many words that are pronounced and spelled in strikingly similar ways.

Still, the meanings of these words are poles apart.

It pays to know which English words are easily confused.

Being armed with that knowledge helps us keep our English writing and speech from becoming quickly misunderstood.

Below are common vocabulary errors that start in letter Pp and which bedevil many English speakers and learners.

1. Parameter versus Perimeter

A parameter is a factor for consideration. A perimeter is a border or limit.

Example:

Wrong: Immigration officials set out certain absurd perimeters for applicants to be allowed into the country. They’ve gotten very strict.

Right: Immigration officials set out certain absurd parameters for applicants to be allowed into the country. They’ve gotten very strict.

2. Perquisite versus Prerequisite

A perquisite is an advantage, an extra, or a perk. A prerequisite is a pre-condition or a requirement.

Example:

Wrong: I can’t possibly enroll in this class. I failed the perquisite course.

Right: I can’t possibly enroll in this class. I failed the prerequisite course.

3. Perspective versus Prospective

A perspective is a point of view, an outlook. On the other hand, something is prospective if it is forthcoming or in the offing.

Example:

Wrong: That is one way of looking at it. We better get other prospectives to understand this issue well.

Right: That is one way of looking at it. We better get other perspectives to understand this issue well.

4. Pertinent versus Pertaining

Something is pertinent if it is related, important or applicable. Something is pertaining to something if it is associated with something.

Example:

Wrong: We have to make a thorough presentation before the managers. Gather all pertaining data so we can make an accurate sales forecast.

Right: We have to make a thorough presentation before the managers. Gather all pertinent data so we can make an accurate sales forecast.

5. Practicable versus Practical

Something is practicable if it is workable or can be put into practice. Something is practical if it is useful and helpful.

Example:

Wrong: Fasting for 90 days? That cannot be practical. I’ll die of hunger.

Right: Fasting for 90 days? That cannot be practicable. I’ll die of hunger.

6. Precipitate versus Precipitous

Precipitate is a verb that means to make things quick or advance. Precipitous is an adjective that means quick or abrupt.

Example:

Wrong: Everything that happened between last month and yesterday precipitous her depression. She needs medical help.

Right: Everything that happened between last month and yesterday precipitated her depression. She needs medical help.

7. Preclude versus Prevent

The verb preclude means to make something unneeded. The verb prevent means to rule out from happening.

Example:

Wrong: Early diagnosis can preclude certain diseases from becoming deadly.

Right: Early diagnosis can prevent certain diseases from becoming deadly.

8. Principal versus Principle

A principal is something that or somebody who is considered a head or a major. A principle is a rule or a standard.

Example:

Wrong: Some principals are universal – unselfishness, honesty, and compassion.

Right: Some principles are universal – unselfishness, honesty, and compassion.

9. Proceed versus Precede

To proceed means to go forward. To precede means to come beforehand.

Example:

Wrong: Precede with caution. You’re treading on dangerous grounds.

Right: Proceed with caution. You’re treading on dangerous grounds.

10. Publicity versus Notoriety

Publicity implies positive promotion, advertising or hype while notoriety implies negative exposure or media hype.

Example:

Wrong: This well-paid actor wants his image clean. His handlers have some notorietystunts laid out for him.

Right: This well-paid actor wants his image clean. His handlers have some publicity stunts laid out for him.

Copyright © 2011 Kerlyn Bautista

All Rights Reserved

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