Homophones are words with the same pronunciation but different meanings. They make
the English language intriguing and contextual. In some cases, homophones can be traced
historically from their original forms and how they have morphed over time. Below are some
common homophones and their meanings:
The palate is the upper side of the mouth that separates it from the nasal cavity. It is a
noun. This is generally the term that is used to refer to part of human anatomy. It can be the
“hard palate” or “soft palate.” It is a medical term that physicians use to refer to parts of the
mouth. For instance, “the patient’s palate is reddened.” The palate is used to refer to an
intellectual taste or liking. For instance, "He has a palate for Cuban cigars.” In this case, it is
used metaphorically to means that someone likes something. It denotes desire and a range of
options for individual tastes. An example in a sentence could be “the Chinese buffet was adapted
for the American palate.” It was first used in the 14 th Century with this meaning. It is thought to
have originated from the Latin word palatum. The contextual is essential in determining the
meaning. As such, English speakers need to be aware of the surrounding and the topic in a
discussion or a conversation.
Palette refers to the thin oval board that painters hold and use to mix pigments on. In a
sentence, “the painter balanced his palette on his left hand while painting with his right one.”
This is the literal meaning of the word as board used to hold paint. It also refers to the set of
colors placed on the palette or as a reference to the range, quality, or use of color. The second
meaning is used to refer to variety; for instance, "the garden comprised a palette of flowers and
vegetables." In this sense, it is used in a sophisticated manner when both speakers have expertise
on a field. It is used to describe the display of variety in a piece of art such as the tones and
texture. It can be used to allude to variety of any kind as appropriate as a way of comparison.
This comparison is to demonstrate that there is more than one kind of an item. The first known
use of palette was in 1661 as a derivative from Middle French. It is diminutive of pale, which
means spade. It is also closely associated with the Latin word pala.
"Pallet" is a noun with two main definitions. First, it is “a straw-filled mattress” or “a
small, hard, or temporary bed.” Its use in a sentence could be “the homeless man set up his pallet
in a lonely corner.” In this meaning, it first used in the 14 th Century as a Middle English
derivative of paillet. This was the Anglo-French equivalent of a bundle of straw while paille
meant straw. Furthermore, it could have been derived from Latin palea, meaning chaff or straw,
which is also similar to Sanskrit palava chaff. English used this derivative to form its own word
pallet which meant a bed filled with straw. A pallet was a common word in the 14 th Century
because most of the beds used were made of straw before later innovation brough the mattress.
Second, it is a wooden flat-bladed instrument or a portable platform for handling, storing,
or moving material. It is used in contemporary language to refer to wooden structures used in
warehouses to prevent cereal or hay items from touching the damp ground.
In a sentence: “The corn was placed on a pallet to keep it dry.” This definition comes from the
Middle French palette, which literary means “small shovel.” Its first known use was in the 15 th
Century. The second meaning is more common than the first one.
Homophones represent a set of words that can only be distinguished by the spelling in
written form as well as the context in which they are used. The English language is fraught with
many examples of these words, which have been derived from morphologies of past language
structures like Latin and Middle French or Middle English.
“Pallet.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-
“Palette.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-
“Palate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-