flair, flare

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

The answer is simple: flair, flare are homophones of the English language.

  1. :: noun

    A natural talent or aptitude; a knack: a flair for interior decorating.

  2. :: noun

    Instinctive discernment; keenness: a flair for the exotica.

  3. :: noun

    Distinctive elegance or style: served us with flair.

  1. :: verb-intransitive

    To flame up with a bright, wavering light.

  2. :: verb-intransitive

    To burst into intense, sudden flame.

  3. :: verb-intransitive

    To erupt or intensify suddenly: Tempers flared at the meeting. His allergies flared up.

  4. :: verb-intransitive

    To become suddenly angry. Used with up: He flared up when she alluded to his financial difficulties.

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

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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").