Vocabulary. 13.12.2013
Homophones

High and hi, higher and hire

Автор: Маша Миронова

Hi, everyone!
Did you know that there are special words called “homophones”? It has nothing to do with phones, if that’s what you thought. Homophones (омонимы)  are words which have absolutely the same pronunciation but different meanings. For example, if you write that you’re so board, people will misunderstand you, because you’re not a board made of wood from a tree, you’re bored, you’re not interested.


Can you find another example in the picture? I’ll give you a hint  – it also has something to do with trees…

There are also words which have almost the same pronunciation, but still sound a bit different. For example, if you say “I want buy this” – it’s incorrect, because you meant “I won’t buy this”. One sound can make a great difference.


So as not to make fools of ourselves and do everything right, let’s find out a little more about…

 

High and hi, higher and hire

 

High and hi are homophones. We say them like this: [haɪ]
High – высокий
I have very high heels. (высокие каблуки)


Hi – привет =)
Hi there – привет (когда speakers находятся на большом расстоянии).
So if I am talking to someone on the phone, I can say “hi there”.
Иногда "Hi there" используют как более informal version of “hi”.


Higher and hire are also homophones: [’haɪər]
Higher – it is the comparative form of the adjective “high”.

This mountain is high, and this mountain is higher.
We have the phrase “higher education”. This is the type of education we can get at a university.
To hire – нанимать на работу. It is a synonym of “to employ”. The opposite of “to hire” is “to fire” – увольнять.


I think that people with higher education are more likely to get hired by good companies. Do you agree with this statement?

 

Here are some more phrases with these words which might be useful:

  • To be high – to be on drugs now. Sarah doesn’t understand anything, she’s high.
  • High time – самое время. It’s high time we started our homework!
  • High-flier – a person who is usually successful. Don’t worry about Davina, she will pass the test, she’s a high-flier!
  • High mountain – высокая гора
  • High voice – высокий голос. Sopranos have high voices.
  • Not for hire – this taxi cannot take new passengers. A taxi was waiting at the theater, but it was not for hire.
  • Hire (someone/something) out - to let someone use something for pay. Сдавать кому-то что-то. I hired my lawnmower out to my owners. (= they used my lawnmower, I got money)
  • High price – высокая цена. What is the highest price you can pay for a pair of high-heeled shoes?


Answer these questions:
- Do you have higher education?
- Do you say “hi” if you meet your friend more than once a day?
- Do you think men get hired for more responsible jobs?

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