Similar looking words that are actually dissimilar in meaning – Part 2 (Final)

  1.  Determined and Determinism

When you are determined, you persevere.  Determinism has nothing to do with perseverance.  Instead, this word is used to describe a belief that everything is predestined, so people are not able to act according to their free will.

For instance, those who are determined are more likely to achieve their goals as compared to those who subscribe to the concept of  determinism.

2. Systematic and Systemic

Being systematic is doing something in a structured manner. Systemic however, relates to or affects the whole of a system, organization etc

For instance, corruption faced by the country is a systemic one that will require a systematic approach to eradicate over an extended period.

3. Category and Categorically

While the word category is used to indicate a group, it would be a mistake to think that categorically relates to classification.  Instead, the word means something that is clear and without a doubt.

For instance, the government categorically (clearly without a doubt) states that cocaine remains in the category of illegal drugs that is banned even for medical purposes.

4. Attendant

Most of us know that an attendant is someone hired to provide a service.  This is so when the word is used as a noun.  But it’s a different meaning altogether when it becomes an adjective.  As an adjective, it means something that occurs with or happens as a result.

For instance, the attendant explosion happened when the pump attendant was smoking too near the gas station.

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