Cite, Sight, and Site

The Quick Answer
What are the differences between cite, sight, and site?

Cite means to mention or to quote.
Sight relates to vision.
Site means a piece of land or to assign a position to.

Sight, Site, and Cite

The words sight, site, and cite sound identical, but they mean different meanings (i.e., they are homonyms).


Sight relates to vision. It is the power of seeing (i.e., perception by the eyes). It can also be something that is seen (e.g., What a beautiful sight.)

  • The newborn foal was an emotional sight for all of us.
  • After the laser treatment, her sight was perfect.


The noun site refers to a piece of land (e.g., building site). As a verb, to site means to position in a place (e.g., I will site the slide near the swings.)

  • There are three landfill sites in the local vicinity.
  • Mr Dodds claimed his tools had been stolen from the archaeological site.


The verb to cite means to quote, to refer to, to summon to appear before a court of law or simply to mention.

  • The lecturer cited several instances of illegal behaviour.
  • The young inspector was cited for his outstanding achievements.
  • Remember to cite expert opinion to support your points.

See Also

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?
What are verbs? What are nouns? Glossary of easily confused words Glossary of common errors Glossary of grammatical terms