Confused Words #4: Averse, Horde and Sight

By Maeve Maddox

Here are three word pairs that are often confused.

1. Averse / Adverse

averse: disinclined

Incorrect: Regular readers of this column will know that I’m not adverse to shameless self-promotion.
Correct : Regular readers of this column will know that I’m not averse to shameless self-promotion.

adverse: harmful, undesirable

Incorrect: The effectiveness of disulfiram (Antabuse) lies in its ability to produce a highly averse reaction in most patients after ingestion of even a small amount of alcohol.
Correct : The effectiveness of disulfiram (Antabuse) lies in its ability to produce a highly adverse reaction in most patients after ingestion of even a small amount of alcohol.

2. Horde / Hoard

horde (noun): a great company; a large turbulent group of people

Incorrect: One year, a hoard of shoppers trampled a Walmart employee to death.
Correct : One year, a horde of shoppers trampled a Walmart employee to death.

hoard (noun): an accumulation of things put away for preservation.
(verb): to amass and put away for future use.

Incorrect: To supplement the state-imposed ration, or to horde goods for after the war, some Germans traded on the black market.
Correct : To supplement the state-imposed ration, or to hoard goods for after the war, some Germans traded on the black market.

3. Sight / Site

sight (noun): something seen, especially of a striking or remarkable nature.

Incorrect: The gruesome site of Laker lying dead in the street affected him.
Correct : The gruesome sight of Laker lying dead in the street affected him.

site (noun): an area (real or virtual), a piece of ground.

Incorrect: On Thursday we visited the sight where the North and South Twin Towers once stood. 
Correct : On Thursday we visited the site where the North and South Twin Towers once stood. 

Previous posts covering these topics:
Averse, Adverse
Hordes of People Shouldn’t Hoard
Site, Sight and the Spell Check Syndrome

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3 Responses to “Confused Words #4: Averse, Horde and Sight”

  • Ron Coleman

    How about those who confuse “site” and “cite”?

  • Furkles

    Don’t be certain that Walmart doesn’t hoard shoppers. Imagine in the back of the store are pens with scores of angry miscreant shoppers. And as you open the front door you hear, “Cry ‘Havoc!’, and let slip the shoppers of war”

  • Maeve

    Furkies,
    What an image!

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