site, cite, sight

The words site, cite, sight sound the same but have different meanings and spellings. Why do site, cite, sight sound the same even though they are completely different words?

The answer is simple: site, cite, sight are homophones of the English language.

cite
  1. :: verb-transitive

    To quote as an authority or example.

  2. :: verb-transitive

    To mention or bring forward as support, illustration, or proof: cited several instances of insubordinate behavior.

  3. :: verb-transitive

    To commend officially for meritorious action in military service.

  4. :: verb-transitive

    To honor formally.

sight
  1. :: noun

    The ability to see.

  2. :: noun

    The act or fact of seeing: hoping for a sight of land; caught sight of a rare bird.

  3. :: noun

    Field of vision.

  4. :: noun

    The foreseeable future; prospect: no solution in sight.

site
  1. :: noun

    A website.

  2. :: noun

    The place where a structure or group of structures was, is, or is to be located: a good site for the school.

  3. :: noun

    The place or setting of something: a historic site; a job site.

  4. :: verb-transitive

    To situate or locate on a site: sited the power plant by the river.

Definitions from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition and Wordnik.

Share site, cite, sight

About Homophones

Homophones (literally "same sound") are usually defined as words that share the same pronunciation, regardless of how they are spelled.

If they are spelled the same then they are also homographs (and homonyms); if they are spelled differently then they are also heterographs (literally "different writing").