Wait or Weight?

by Craig Shrives
The Quick Answer
What is the difference between wait and weight?

As a noun, wait refers to the delay before an event.
As a verb, to wait means to endure a delay.

Weight can either be a noun or a verb. As a verb, it means to anchor something down with a heavy object.
As a noun, weight means heaviness.

Wait or Weight?

The words wait and weight sound identical, but their meanings are completely different.


The word wait can be used as both a noun and a verb.

As a verb, it means to stay where one is or to delay an action until a particular time. When used as a noun, it refers to a period of delay or postponement. For example:
  • Opportunities are like sunrises. If you wait too long, you miss them.
  • (Here, wait is a verb.)
  • We have had a long wait for democracy.
  • (Here, wait is a noun.)


The noun weight refers to something's relative mass or the quantity of matter contained by it (i.e., its heaviness). The verb to weight is quite rare. It means to hold something down by placing something heavy on top of it. For example:
  • I'm gaining weight the right way: I'm drinking beer.
  • (Here, weight is a noun.)
  • Why are empirical questions about how the mind works so weighted down with political, moral, and emotional baggage?
  • (Here, weight is a verb.)
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? tenant or tenet? who's or whose? What are adjectives? What are nouns? List of easily confused words