Can You Pass This Spelling Test?

By: Beth Hendricks
Estimated Completion Time
3 min
Can You Pass This Spelling Test?
Image: Terry Vine/DigitalVision/Getty Images

About This Quiz

When it comes to spelling, are you a word-meister or a word "messer-upper?" Let's face it: Some of us are naturally gifted with the ability to take down the competition in the school spelling bee and others of us, well, we're just not. You may have seen a sentence like this on social media: "I cnduo't bvleiee taht I culod aulaclty uesdtannrd waht I was rdnaieg." Does that send chills up your spine? If so, you're probably a master speller. If not, no worries, we'll interpret: "I couldn't believe that I could actually understand what I was reading." 

If you ever want to feel like a spelling underachiever, watch the National Spelling Bee some year. In 2019, there was an unprecedented eight-way tie for champion. The bee's pronouncer said they had "thrown the dictionary" at the spelling lovers and that all of them had shown the dictionary who was boss. So, we got to wondering: Can you show this spelling test who's boss? We have some hard words and some tricky words (so proceed with caution!). Do you have what it takes to win our own version of a spelling bee? We're C-O-U-N-T-I-N-G on you.

1 Breath After hiking up the mountain, Wes said he needed to catch his __________.
Breeth
Breathe
Breath
The words "breath" and "breathe" are often incorrectly interchanged and their spelling is so similar, it's easy to see why! "Breathe" is a verb while "breath" is a noun. They are also pronounced in different ways.
Breth

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2 Aisle She walked up and down the __________ of the grocery store.
Aisles
When you're in the grocery store, you're perusing the aisles. But, if you were in the Caribbean, you might hop between "isles." Aisles are passageways, while isles is a short form of the word "island."
Iles
Ills
Ailes

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3 Night She offered to go during the afternoon because she couldn't go at __________.
Nyte
Night
Though some people like to take the easy way out and spell it "nite," the proper spelling of the word is "night," as in "day and night." Night is the period of time between the sun's setting and its rising the next day.
Nite
Knite

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4 Tsunami A __________ in the Indian Ocean in 2004 impacted 11 different countries from east Africa to Thailand.
Tzunamy
Tsunami
Tsunamis are actually caused by earthquakes and other violent underwater events, triggering massive tidal waves along coastlines. The 2004 tsunami was brought about after a 9.0 magnitude earthquake occurred in the Indian Ocean.
Soonami
Suename

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5 Knowledge He went to school for so long, he acquired __________ in a lot of subject areas.
Knalledge
Nowledge
Knowledge
A classroom certainly isn't the only place where you can obtain knowledge, but it does provide a good atmosphere for doing so. Our modern-day word comes from the Greek, "gnosis," which is probably where the interesting "kn" start came from.
Nahlege

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6 Grammar The teacher told her she had excellent __________.
Grahamer
Grammer
Gramar
Grammar
We think good grammar is an essential life skill! It prepares you for everything from effectively communicating with others to leading with clarity to getting that job you applied for.

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7 Guarantee I can almost __________ that my favorite football team will win the Super Bowl.
Guarentee
Garrenty
Guarantee
Guarantee is one of those tricky words that doesn't look quite how it sounds. The word is likely influenced by both the Spanish word, "garante," and the French word, "garantie."
Garente

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8 Committee Amanda's boss asked her to serve on the welcoming __________.
Committee
When you think of the word "committee," just double it up! Committee has two Ms, two Ts and two Es that make up its spelling. A committee is a group of people to whom some task has been entrusted.
Comittee
Commite
Commitee

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9 Raspberry Prince's song, "__________ Beret," was featured on his album, "Around the World in a Day."
Razzberry
Rasberry
Raseberry
Raspberry
The word "raspberry" comes from the word "raspise," a sweet type of wine. Equally sweet was the Prince song, "Raspberry Beret," which tells the story of a young man who becomes smitten with a girl in a retail store.

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10 Independent He decided to change his political affiliation to __________.
Inndepenndant
Endependant
Independent
In the United States, there are several political affiliations that one can join, or they can register as an "Independent." This means that the individual is free of being attached to either party specifically.
Indypendant

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11 Your Keys Can you grab __________ keys? I forgot mine.
Yure
Your
Not only is this a tricky word to spell, it can be hard to sometimes know which version of the word to use! Remember that "you're" is a contraction that means "you are," while "your" typically indicates possessions such as "your" keys" or "your house."
Yore
You're

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12 Thorough Doctor The doctor was very __________ during my appointment.
Therou
Thorough
The word we know today as "thorough," which signifies something complete from one end to the other appears to have been adapted from the word "through," which also indicates a passageway of sorts.
Through
Thurough

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13 Diseases Scientists have made numerous advancements in treating infectious __________.
Dase
Diseases
Don't be grossed out! Infectious diseases, according to the CDC, can be anything from an E. coli infection to the common flu. Now, aren't you glad scientists are working to cure these diseases?
Disceses
Deseezes

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14 Truly Pop band Savage Garden released a song called, "__________ Madly Deeply" in 1997.
Trulie
Truly
The song "Truly Madly Deeply" was featured on the Australian pop group's debut album, which shared the group's name: Savage Garden. Some people consider it one of the great love songs of the 1990s.
Truely
Truley

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15 Counterfeit If you get caught trying to use ___________ money, you could find yourself in big trouble.
Counterfit
Counterfeet
Counterfeit
Money that is "counterfeit" is a nice way of saying that it's fake. Many practices have been put into place by the federal government to cut down on these counterfeit bills, including watermarks and security threads.
Counterfiet

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16 Jewelry Tiffany & Co. is widely regarded as one of the world's finests purveyors of __________.
Jewelry
Tiffany & Co. began as a store featuring "stationery and fancy goods" in the 1830s. Fast-forward to 2019, and the company is considered one of the most exclusive jewelry stores in the entire world.
Jewlry
Jewlery
Jelwry

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17 Laboratory 23andMe has analyzed the DNA of more than five million customers in its __________.
Labratery
Labratory
Labartory
Laboratory
The laboratory at 23andMe, a genetic testing business, stays business. To date, the company says more than five million people have submitted DNA samples to be analyzed for ancestral data.

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18 Yacht The owner of the Dallas Cowboys recently purchased a $250 million __________.
Yaat
Yaht
Yacht
Jerry Jones, the billionaire owner of the NFL's Dallas Cowboys, rocked the sports world (and the regular world, tbh) when he recently dropped $250 million on a yacht that features a sauna and full gym.
Yahct

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19 Library of Alexandria The world's oldest continually running __________ is located in Cairo, Egypt.
Librarie
Library
Don't plan a trip to this ancient library anytime soon. Built in the sixth century, it houses more religious materials than any other location outside the Vatican, but it's only open to monks and those who are invited.
Libary
Liberry

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20 Desperately She wanted __________ to go to the beach for spring break.
Desprettly
Desperetly
Desperately
Remember that there is "a rate" in desperately, even though most of us pronounce it without sounding out each syllable. If you want to do something "desperately," you must want it pretty badly.
Desprately

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21 Conscience The comedian Steven Wright once said, "A clear __________ is usually the sign of a bad memory."
Conscence
Conscious
Conscience
We don't know if Wright was joking or not when he uttered this phrase. Having a clear conscience usually means you haven't done anything wrong. How many of us can say that?
Conchunts

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22 Chief The police __________ promised the public a swift resolution to the issue.
Cheef
Cheif
Chief
The title of "chief" can appear just about anywhere, from police and fire departments to newspapers (think editor-in-chief). A chief is someone who is the leader or ruler of others.
Chefe

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23 Necessary Do you think it's __________ to visit Walt Disney World when you're in Orlando?
Nesecerry
Necessary
Who would've ever thought the word "necessary" would lead with a "C" before an "S"? (Just say it silently to yourself.) It's very necessary to have the "C," though, so don't forget it or you'll have it spelled incorrectly.
Nescescery
Nesesary

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24 Precede For a pregnant woman, stronger contractions usually __________ actual labor.
Proceed
Preceed
Precede
When one thing "precedes" another, that means it comes before it. In the case of a pregnant woman, symptoms that may precede labor include stronger contractions or water breaking.
Preseed

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25 Promise He made a __________ that he would take them to the zoo.
Promise
From the Latin "promissum," we derive this word we use today to represent something we assure someone else that we will do. We promise to put 40 clues in this quiz; do you promise to work all the way to the end?
Promiss
Prommise
Promece

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26 Upholstery He cleaned her car's __________ with baking soda.
Upholestry
Upholesterry
Upholstry
Upholstery
It's true! You can easily clean your car's upholstery (that's the cloth on your seats) with regular household products. Mix baking soda with water and then lightly cover the problems area. Finish by scrubbing with a toothbrush.

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27 Pastime Billionaire businessman Warren Buffett enjoys playing the ukulele as a __________.
Pastime
Pastimes are hobbies or things you do in your spare time, like Buffett's enjoyment of the ukulele. We think it's an odd, but correct spelling that looks like it's missing some letters. But, with a pastime that includes taking online spelling tests, you probably already knew that, didn't you?
Passtime
Pasttime
Pasttyme

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28 Successful Amazon's Prime program has been wildly __________.
Succesful
Successful
In January 2019, Amazon announced it had hit quite a milestone with its Prime memberships: 101 million subscribers. That's in the United States alone. How are we still able to get our packages in 24 hours? It's a mystery.
Successfull
Sucessful

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29 Religious The pope is someone most people would consider to be extremely __________.
Religious
There has been a pope at the head of the Roman Catholic Church since Saint Peter held the job. The Basilica in Vatican City where the pope lives is named after him – St. Peter's Basilica.
Religous
Religius
Religus

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30 Vacuum Tracy told me that his least favorite household chore was running the __________.
Vacume
Vacuum
We'll admit it--we don't like running the vacuum either. Give us dusting or folding clothes any day of the week. A vacuum, sometimes called a sweeper, picks up dirt and debris on your floors.
Vaccuum
Vaccum

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31 Intelligence The Central __________ Agency is a top-secret government agency tasked with protecting the country.
Enteligence
Intelligence
The Central Intelligence Agency, or the CIA as most people call it, is a top-secret government agency that protects the United States both inside and outside the country. Ever watched a spy movie? You've probably seen them in action.
Inteligence
Inteligance

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32 Playwrights William Shakespeare was one of the most famous __________ in history.
Playrites
Playwrites
Playrights
Playwrights
England definitely considers Shakespeare its most famous playwright. Some of his most popular works include "Romeo and Juliet," "Hamlet," "Macbeth," "The Merchant of Venice," "A Midsummer-Night's Dream" and "Much Ado about Nothing," among others.

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33 Lightning We had to hurry and get out of the pool before the __________ started.
Lightening
Lightning
Thunder and lightning, lightning and thunder ... is there anything better than a good storm? Well, except maybe if you're trying to chill at the pool or the beach. Lightning occurs as a result of positive and negative charges interacting in a cloud.
Litening
Liteuning

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34 Plagiarized American author Helen Keller was once accused of having __________ a work she called, "The Frost."
Plagerised
Plagiarized
It's true: Noted author Helen Keller was once accused of having plagiarized a work she called "The Frost," from a work by Margaret Canby titled, "The Frost Fairies." Plagiarism is a big no-no. It's the act of taking someone else's work and passing it off as your own.
Plagerized
Playgerized

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35 Welfare The Preamble to the U.S. Constitution states that, "We the People ... shall ... promote the general __________."
Wellfere
Welfair
Welfare
The Preamble to the Constitution says a lot of other things, in addition to promoting the general welfare. It also says we will establish justice and provide for the common defense. Why? Well, to form a more perfect union, of course.
Wellfair

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36 Medieval __________ tales explain how Robin Hood stole from the rich to give to the poor.
Medevil
Midevil
Medieval
We're not saying that stealing is right, but people sure do appreciate a character like Robin Hood who saw the injustice of the rich getting richer while the poor got poorer. So, he took matters into his own hands. Hey, even Disney loved the story.
Medeval

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37 Rhythm Songstress Janet Jackson released the song, "__________ Nation" in 1989 in response to things being presented in the media.
Rythm
Rythem
Rhythm
Janet Jackson's "Rhythm Nation" hit was actually penned as a response to tragedies that were presenting themselves around the country. Jackson was attempting to use her platform to speak on issues such as racial inequality, poverty and drug abuse.
Ritheme

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38 Questionnaire After making her purchase, the online retailer asked her to fill out a __________.
Questionere
Questionnaire
A questionnaire is simply a set of questions an individual might be asked in order to gather responses. A business might do this as a way of judging what someone thinks of its products or customer service.
Questionnair
Questionair

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39 Niece Emma Roberts is the __________ of one famous actress, a "Pretty Woman," if you will.
Neise
Neice
Niece
That's right! Emma Roberts of "American Horror Story" fame boasts a famous aunt in Julia Roberts, who starred in "Pretty Woman," opposite Richard Gere in 1990. Or, you might say that Julia Roberts has a pretty famous niece.
Neece

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40 Secretary The first person to hold the office of U.S. __________ of State was Thomas Jefferson.
Seceratary
Secretary
Jefferson may have been first, but there has been a long line of notable secretaries of state since he left office in 1793, including James Baker, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton.
Secratary
Secratery

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