Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Accept and Except


Accept vs Except

The English language can become tricky at times especially with the use of some words the looks interchangeable when in reality they aren’t. An example of such is the confusion between the usages of the words accept and except. Well, for native English speakers this may appear as a piece of cake but nonetheless this can prove to be tough for those who are learning English for the first time only.

The confusion between these two words is most likely due to its close spellings and pronunciations. Both have the same majority of letters except for their first two letters. One has one letter ‘c’ (except) while the other has two (accept). In terms of pronunciation, both words are pronounced the same way at their second syllables and differ only with their first syllable pronunciations (because of the difference in spelling).

With regard to their individual word usage, accept is used more commonly as a verb. When one says he accepts something, he signifies that he admits, receives or plainly say ‘yes’ to a proposal. This can be concretely shown in the following examples. In the sentence, ‘I will accept your gift’ you are saying that you are receiving a gift. Next, when you say ‘I was accepted at college’ this means that you have been admitted to a college level of education. Also, when you’ll be asked if you’re going to accept a proposal or not then you’ll reply with ‘I accept’ then it is synonymous to saying ‘Yes!’

Except is used differently. Oftentimes, it is used more as a preposition than a verb. The word literally means excluding. When you say, ‘I like all colors except brown’ then you are saying that brown is excluded from the colors that you like. In the sentence, ‘I would have helped him, except I was doing something else that time’ the word is used as a conjunction. In this instance, the word would mean ‘other than.’ Although rarely, the word except can also be used as a verb as exemplified in the sentence ‘The doctors are all excepted from the symposium.’ As a verb, the word would literally mean ‘to exclude.’

Overall, the two words are actually quite easy to discern from each other. In fact, they may even appear to have directly opposing meanings. It’s just that their spellings and pronunciations make them a little confusing. Nevertheless:

1. Accept is often used as a verb whereas except is frequently used as a preposition.
2. Accept has two letter ‘c’ while except only has one.
3. Accept usually means that you are receiving or admitting something whereas except usually means that you are excluding something or someone.


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