GCSE English

Stationary & stationery


These two words are pronounced the same way, but they have very different meanings:

Stationary = not moving
e.g. After the car slid down the slope, Katie's car was stationary.

Stationery is a general term used to describe writing paper, pens, pencils, envelopes, etc.
e.g. Jane's stationery cupboard had everything she needed to run the office efficiently.

We think the best way to remember this is: "Stop writing!" which is what you hear at the end of exams.

Alphabetically, stationary comes before stationery. Stop also comes before writing... So when you stop, you're stationary. When you're writing... you use stationery!

Advice and advise
Affect and effect
Bought and brought
Complement and compliment
Discreet and discrete
Hear and here
Its and it's
Lead and led
Less and fewer
Licence and license
Loose and lose
  Plane and plain
Poor, pore and pour
Practice and practise
Principal and principle
Sort and sought
Stationary and stationery - new!
There, their and they're
Threw, through and thorough
To and too
Warn and Worn
Whose and who's
Your and you're

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