reck, wreck

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

The answer is simple: reck, wreck are homophones of the English language.

reck
  1. :: verb-transitive

    To take heed of or to have caution.

wreck
  1. :: noun

    The act of wrecking or the state of being wrecked; destruction.

  2. :: noun

    Accidental destruction of a ship; a shipwreck.

  3. :: noun

    The stranded hulk of a severely damaged ship.

  4. :: noun

    Fragments of a ship or its cargo cast ashore by the sea after a shipwreck; wreckage.

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").