Storey or Story?

by Craig Shrives

What Is the Difference between "Storey" and "Story"?

"Storey" and "story" are easy to confuse if you're following UK writing conventions because "story" and "storey" have different meanings. In the US, "storey" is not a word.
  • "Story" means "narrative" or "tale." For example:
    • Tell me a bedtime story. correct tick
    • ("Story" is used in this meaning in the US and the UK.)
  • "Story" means "the level of a building" in the US. For example:
    • A five-story building correct tick small American flag
  • "Storey" means "the level of a building" in the UK. For example:
    • A five-storey building correct tick small British flag
story or storey?

The Plural of "Story" and "Storey"

The plural of "story" is "stories." For example:
  • She tells good stories. correct tick (small American flag and small British flag)
  • With 163 stories, the Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. correct tick (small American flag) wrong cross (small British flag)
The plural of "storey" is "storeys." For example:
  • With 163 storeys, the Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. wrong cross (small American flag) correct tick (small British flag)
  • ("Storeys" is only correct for Brits. Americans would write "163 stories.")

More Examples with "Story" and "Storey"

Here are two more examples to show the difference between "story" and "storey":
  • Beowulf is an epic traditional good-versus-evil story. Beowulf battles three monsters throughout the story. (small American flag and small British flag)
  • (Both Brits and Americans use "story" to mean "narrative" or "tale.")
  • I heard a story about the bungee jumper who died because he miscalculated the height of the each storey before diving off a building. wrong cross (small American flag) correct tick (small British flag)
  • (In this example, the word "story" is correct for Americans and Brits. However, the word "storey" is only correct for Brits. In the US, there is no such word as "storey.")

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See Also

What is Cock and Bull story? adverse or averse? affect or effect? appraise or apprise? avenge or revenge? bare or bear? complement or compliment? dependant or dependent? discreet or discrete? disinterested or uninterested? e.g. or i.e.? envy or jealousy? imply or infer? its or it's? material or materiel? poisonous or venomous? practice or practise? principal or principle? tenant or tenet? who's or whose? List of easily confused words

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