Peace or Piece?

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Peace or Piece?

What is the difference between "peace" and "piece"?
  • "Peace" means "freedom from disturbance" or "a period in which there is no war or aggression."
  • "A piece" means "a portion." It can also refer to "an artistic creation" (e.g., a piece of music).
  • "To piece" means "to assemble something from several parts."
peace or piece?

More about "Peace" and "Piece"

Occasionally, there is confusion over the words "peace" and "piece." These words are homonyms (i.e., they sound identical), but their meanings are very different.

Peace

The word "peace" is a noun that means "a period in which there is no war." It also describes "freedom from disturbance" or "calmness."

Examples in Sentences:
  • We make war so that we may live in peace.
  • Barbecue may not be the road to world peace, but it's a start.

Piece

The word "piece" can be used as a noun or a verb. When used as a noun, "piece" means a portion or section of something. It also describes a written, musical, or artistic creation (e.g., a lovely piece of music). As a verb, it means to assemble or construct something from several parts. It is usually seen in the form "to piece together".

Examples in Sentences:
  • A hexagonal piece of cheese is a lot better than a square piece of cheese.
  • (Here, "piece" means portion or slice.)
  • I'm learning the oboe - just single notes, not an entire piece of music.
  • (Here, "piece" is describing a musical creation.)
  • I am a self-taught guitarist. I just try to piece together passages that have some melodic value!
  • (Here is an example of "piece" being used as a verb.)

Common Terms with "Peace" and "Piece"

Common terms with the word "peace":
  • world peace
  • at peace
  • inner peace
  • peace be with you
  • rest in peace
  • War and Peace
  • peace of mind
Common terms with the word "piece":
  • piece of cake
  • piece of meat
  • bits and pieces
  • go to pieces
  • a piece of my mind

"Peace of Mind" or "Piece of Mind"?

Writers are sometimes unsure whether to write "peace of mind" or "piece of mind." This confusion arises because there are two similar expressions:
  • "Peace of mind" means to be at ease with a situation. For example:
    • I have just upgraded by house insurance. I now have peace of mind.
  • The words "piece of mind" most commonly feature in a term like "a piece of my mind," which means "what I am thinking." For example:
    • I will give him a piece of my mind.
    • (This means "I will tell him what I am thinking." "A piece of my mind" carries a connotation of being angry with a situation.)
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? 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? cannot or can not? who's or whose? What are adjectives? What are nouns? List of easily confused words