heigh, hi, hie, high

The words heigh, hi, hie, high sound the same but have different meanings and spellings. Why do heigh, hi, hie, high sound the same even though they are completely different words?

The answer is simple: heigh, hi, hie, high are homophones of the English language.

  1. :: interjection

    An exclamation designed to call attention, give encouragement, etc.

  1. :: interjection

    Informal Used to express greeting. See Regional Note at hey.

  1. :: verb-transitive

    To go quickly; hasten.

  1. :: adjective

    Having a relatively great elevation; extending far upward: a high mountain; a high tower.

  2. :: adjective

    Extending a specified distance upward: a cabinet ten feet high.

  3. :: adjective

    Far or farther from a reference point: was too high in the offensive zone to take a shot.

  4. :: adjective

    Being at or near the peak or culminating stage: the high tourist season; high summer.

Definitions from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License, 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").