incandescence, incandescents

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

The answer is simple: incandescence, incandescents are homophones of the English language.

  1. :: noun

    The emission of visible light by a hot object.

  2. :: noun

    The light emitted by an incandescent object.

  3. :: noun

    A high degree of emotion, intensity, or brilliance.

  1. :: noun

    Plural form of incandescent.

Definitions from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition, from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License 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").