Chord or Cord?

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Chord or Cord?

What is the difference between "chord" and "cord"?
  • "Chord" is 3 or more music notes sounded together. For example:
    • What are the easiest chords to play on a guitar?
  • "Cord" is a rope, bond, or electrical cable. For example:
    • Be careful not to tangle the phone cord.
chord or cord?

Chord

The noun "chord" is a musical term that denotes a group of three or more notes sounded together. It is also used in geometry to denote a geometric line segment in a circle.

Examples:
  • One chord is fine. Two chords are pushing it. Three chords and you're into jazz. (Musician Lou Reed)
  • I love the chord sequences in classical music. I often use that sort of effect in my solos. (Composer Jon Lord)

Cord

The noun "cord" refers to an electrical cable, a rope, or an anatomical structure (e.g., spinal cord, vocal cord).

Examples:
  • I invented the cordless extension cord. (Comedian Steven Wright)
  • My guitars are my umbilical cord. They're directly wired into my head. (Musician Kirk Hammett)
  • (It is unusual to see the word "guitar" and "cord" in the same sentence. It's usually "chord.")
Interactive Exercise
Here are three randomly selected questions from a larger exercise, which can be edited, printed to create an exercise worksheet, or sent via email to friends or students.

See Also

adverse or averse? affect or effect? Ms., Miss, or Mrs? 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? cannot or can not? who's or whose? What are nouns? List of easily confused words