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Is your presents required?

Unfortunately, I came across the following sentence online last week:

It is true that having an online presents is very important, however it is just as important to have a real life presents.Ribboned boxes present presents nicely

So today’s Monday Meaning is aimed at correcting that sentence, and preventing it ever being written again!

presents [noun]: something given to another; a gift
The pile of presents reached the branches of the Christmas tree. 

presents [verb]: the act of handing over and introducing something or someone
The compere presents each nominee before the awards are announced. 

presence [noun]: the existence or occurrence of someone or something in a particular place
The contract must be signed in the presence of two adult witnesses. 

To remember which is which, think about the presents you have been sent.

8 Responses to Is your presents required?

  • Anna T says:

    Yes, I see this one quite often and it always irks me. Thank you for explaining the difference in all three meanings. Maybe this will help people who often find themselves misusing the word “presents.”

  • godric says:

    Initially I thought the question was being asked by someone going to a party. I honestly can’t figure out how someone will mistake Presents with Presence but I suppose everything is possible in the internet.

    • tashword says:

      It’s not just on the internet that people get such words wrong, Godric.

      Presents/presence sound so alike that you could guess either spelling if you haven’t been taught them or read them very often.

  • UmiNoor says:

    It can also be noted that “presents” are countable while “presence” is an abstract noun which is uncountable and will always have a singular verb. I like the method you suggested in trying to differentiate between these two words. That is very helpful.

    • tashword says:

      Thanks UmiNoor. I try to suggest memory aids to make it easier for people to remember the correct spelling – just reading the definitions isn’t always enough.

  • onlinebusinessgal says:

    I have actually seen this quite a bit when reading online materials. I am not sure if people are confused about the differences in spelling sand meaning or if they simply are not paying attention to what they are writing. You have provides a great tip for remembering when presents should use, however.

    • tashword says:

      Most similar words are probably misused at times because of inattention rather than lack of knowledge – but twice in one sentence made em think it ere ally was lack of knowledge.

      Glad you like my tip, onlinebusinessgal 🙂

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