Theirs a bare in they’re! Or, just because it sounds write doesn’t mean its bean written the rite weigh.

It doesn’t really matter to a two-year-old watching a certain classic Australian pre-school TV program whether the lyrics of the introductory song read ‘theirs a bare in they’re’, ‘there’s a bare in their’ or ‘there’s a bear in there’ (the correct version); because they all sound the same. English has an abundance of groups of two or more words that have the same pronunciation but different meanings and/or spelling. These are called homophones. They can have the same pronunciation and spelling but different meanings—for example, bear (the animal) and bear (to carry), or have identical pronunciation but different spelling and meanings—for example, bear (the animal) and bare (devoid of covering). Usually there are two or three words that are differently …

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