Peace or Piece?

by Craig Shrives
The Quick Answer
What is the difference between peace and piece?

Peace is a noun that means freedom from disturbance or a period in which there is no war or aggression.

As a noun, piece means a portion. It can also refer to an artistic creation (e.g., a piece of music).
As a verb, to piece means to assemble something from several parts.
peace or piece?

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 denotes a period in which there is no war. It also describes freedom from disturbance or calmness.

Examples:
  • 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:
  • 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
Common terms with the word "piece":
  • piece of cake
  • piece of meat
  • bits and pieces
  • go to pieces
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