gnu, knew, new, nu

The words gnu, knew, new, nu sound the same but have different meanings and spellings. Why do gnu, knew, new, nu sound the same even though they are completely different words?

The answer is simple: gnu, knew, new, nu are homophones of the English language.

  1. :: noun

    Either of two large African antelopes (Connochaetes gnou or C. taurinus) having a drooping mane and beard, a long tufted tail, and curved horns in both sexes. Also called wildebeest.

  1. :: verb

    Past tense of know.

  1. :: adjective

    Having been made or come into being only a short time ago; recent: a new law.

  2. :: adjective

    Still fresh: a new coat of paint.

  3. :: adjective

    Never used or worn before now: a new car; a new hat.

  4. :: adjective

    Just found, discovered, or learned: new information.

  1. :: noun

    The 13th letter of the Greek alphabet. See Table at alphabet.

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").