Please Let Your Interest Be “Piqued”
A reader received an email whose writer expressed this earnest wish:
I hope this peeks your interest in advertising with us.
This misspelling of pique is widespread:
GND’s are here to connect you with things, we hope, will make you laugh. OR Peek your interest. —ad for production company
This book is fascinating and the author infuses the story with mystery and peaks your interest throughout. Amazon book review
Now it’s time to choose what peeks your interest and develop your own personal spin on it. That’s the first step to being successful out here, so I hope you take this message seriously. —tips for website development
I hope the interview below peaks your interest. —blogger
If you have never fished for a Peacock bass, we hope this peaks your interest enough to take your first venture –fishing site
Please look through these groups when you have a chance to see if there is something that peaks your interest. —group networking site
I hope my website peaks your interest, clears up any questions you have, and motivates you to become my patient. —a dentist’s site
I hope the following peeks your interest in continuing education. —diving site
Alright, lets face facts. Everybody loves a discount. It doesnt matter what product peeks your interest at a given moment, discount shopping is a favorite pass time of many. —business site (Yep, this one is a veritable goldmine of misuse: Alright, doesnt, pass time)
pique [pēk] : verb To stimulate or provoke (a person) to action, esp. by arousing jealousy, etc.; to arouse (a feeling, esp. curiosity or interest).
It’s when pique is used in the sense of stimulating interest that it is most frequently misspelled as “peek” or “peak.”
Other meanings of pique as a verb:
pique: transitive verb. To wound the pride of, irritate, or offend; to make resentful. Ex. She deliberately tried to pique him by referring to his old girlfriend.
pique: transitive verb used reflexively. To take pride in or congratulate oneself on. Ex. She piques herself on her good taste in home furnishings.
As a noun pique can have these meanings:
A quarrel or feeling of enmity between two or more people, countries, etc.; ill feeling, animosity.
(A feeling of) anger, irritation, or resentment, resulting from a slight or injury, esp. to one’s pride; offence taken. Now esp. in “fit of pique.” Ex. She quit the club in a fit of pique.
Pique comes from the French verb piquer, “to sting, to bite.”
Amateur book reviewers can probably continue misspelling pique with impunity. People trying to sell their services or a product, however, may want to learn to spell it correctly.
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