Moot or Mute Point?

by Craig Shrives

"Moot Point" or "Mute Point"?

"Moot point" and "mute point" are often confused. The common term is "moot point."

According to dictionary.com, a "moot point" is "a debatable question" or "an issue open to argument." It can also mean "an irrelevant question" or "a matter of no importance."
moot point or mute point?

"Moot" Meaning

"Moot" means "debatable" most of the time. It can also be translated as "open to discussion," "debatable," or "doubtful." "Moot" is an adjective.

Example sentences with "moot":
  • It is a moot point.
  • (This is the most common meaning of "moot." Also, "moot point" is the most common term featuring the word "moot.")
"Moot" also means "of little or no practical value," "purely academic," or "purely theoretical."
  • It is a moot case.
  • (It could, for example, be a case set up so law students can practise court procedures.)
Although rare, "moot" can also be used as a verb that corresponds to the meanings above. For example:
  • I intend to moot this issue.
  • (I intend to present this issue for debate.)
  • We ought to moot this issue.
  • (We ought to render this issue purely theoretical.)

How to Pronounce "Moot" and "Mute"

Click to hear how "moot" and "mute" are pronounced.

"Mute" Meaning

"Mute" most commonly means "speechless," "silent," "refraining from speech," or "quiet." In these meanings, "mute" is an adjective.

Example sentences with "mute":
  • Shocked to the core, he was now mute.
  • Bonzo looked at the diners from his basket with mute longing.
  • It was an eerily mute village.
  • The letter P is mute.
  • (This means that it's not pronounced as in "pneumonia.")
As a noun, "mute" is a "a person without the power of speech," "a button to turn off the sound," or "a device placed on an instrument to deaden the resonance."
  • He is a mute.
  • Press the mute.
  • It sounds awesome with the mute on.
As a verb, "mute" means "to deaden or to muffle the sound of" something.
  • The sodden bed of pine needles muted her steps as she approached the stag.

Ready for the Test?

Help Us Improve Grammar Monster

  • Do you disagree with something on this page?
  • Did you spot a typo?

Find Us Quicker!

  • When using a search engine (e.g., Google, Bing), you will find Grammar Monster quicker if you add #gm to your search term.
Next lesson >

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? tenant or tenet? who's or whose? What are adjectives? List of easily confused words

Page URL