Sometimes, even a professional English writer got confused of some words. For instance, when a writer comes across homophones, he/she can feel a puzzle like situation with word choice. Homophones are such a set of words that sound exactly same but have quite different meanings. So, you have to be very careful while choosing the correct word because a small mistake could be enough to ruin your entire writing. Today’s discussion is also based on a set of homophones; it is discreet vs. discrete.
I will define each of these words with example sentences. In this way, you will get to know the differences between discreet and discrete.
Discreet vs. Discrete – What is the Difference, Definition & Meaning?
Discreet and discrete come from the same origin > from the Latin word ‘discretus.’
Is it discreet or discrete?
As I told you that discreet and discrete are homophones. It means that they just have a similar pronunciation but are different in terms of meaning. You must recognize their spellings that are totally different as, it helps you to keep them apart. Let me define these terms one by one with examples.
Discreet is used as an adjective within a sentence. It is synonymous with close-mouthed, careful, or cautious. It is used to define secrecy which is not likely to be exposed or shown in front of others. It is such a careful action which is hidden in order to keep something secret and unrevealed.
Check out its example sentences.
1. You cannot judge him; he has a very discreet nature.
2. I don’t know why the group wanted me to be more discreet about my thoughts.
3. He stands for fame of his forefather’s feet, By heraldry, proved valiant or discreet. (Edward Young)
Discrete is used as an adjective within a sentence. It is used to describe such things that are separate and detached. Discrete is synonymous with discontinuous, individual, distinct, etc.
1. Each branch of this school has its own discrete designs for syllabus.
2. The boss wants this file in three discrete parts, each explaining all the possible strategies.
3. At the head of these new discoveries and insights comes the establishment of the facts that electricity is composed of discrete particles of equal size, or quanta, and that light is an electromagnetic wave motion. (Johannes Stark)
Discreet and discrete are homophones, having same pronunciation but different meanings. Both are used as an adjective within a sentence. Discreet means cautious or careful whereas, discrete means distinct or separate.