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“Stationary” vs “Stationery”: How to Choose the Right Word

Updated on June 10, 2024Commonly Confused Words

What’s the difference between stationary and stationery?

Understanding the difference between stationary and stationery is crucial for effective communication. Stationary, with an a, means not moving or still. It’s an adjective used to describe something that is fixed in one place. On the other hand, stationery, with an e, refers to writing materials like paper, envelopes, and pens. When to use stationary vs. stationery depends on the context: Use stationary to describe immobility and stationery for office or writing supplies.

Example: The car remained stationary on the road. I need to buy some stationery for my office.

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How do you use stationary in a sentence?

When to use stationary in a sentence is essential for accurately describing something that is not moving. This word helps convey the idea of stillness or lack of motion.

Examples of stationary in a sentence

  • The bicycle remained stationary as its rider took a break.
  • During the earthquake, the statue remained surprisingly stationary.
  • She prefers a stationary bike for her indoor workouts.

How do you use stationery in a sentence?

When to use stationery in a sentence is important for referring to various writing materials. This term is commonly used in contexts involving office supplies or letter writing.

Examples of stationery in a sentence

  • She bought new stationery for her correspondence.
  • The office ordered new stationery with the company logo.
  • My pen ran out of ink, so I need to visit the stationery store.

Stationary and stationery: Definition, parts of speech & pronunciation

Stationary (adjective): Not moving or not intended to be moved.

Example: The vehicle was stationary due to the traffic jam.

Pronunciation: /ˈsteɪʃəˌnɛri/

Stationery (noun): Writing materials, such as paper, envelopes, and pens.

Example: She designed her wedding invitations on elegant stationery.

Pronunciation: /ˈsteɪʃəˌnɛri/

Stationary vs. stationery in a nutshell

In summary, stationary and stationery are homophones, meaning they sound alike but have different meanings. Stationary describes something immobile, while stationery refers to writing supplies. Understanding when to use each term correctly enhances your writing precision. For more on commonly confused words, visit the Commonly Confused Words page. Additionally, explore What Are Homophones to grasp more about words that sound the same but differ in meaning.

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