Difference Between Deer and Dear

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: October 06, 2022

       

Difference Between Deer and Dear Difference Between Deer and Dear

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Introduction

Autocorrect is most often an in-built feature in most electronic gadgets that offer the option of typing. For correspondence, efficient writing is a necessity. Especially when it comes to official or formal correspondence, you cannot have the reader laughing at your misspelt words that could have the power to change the intention of your message. In informal conversation, how often have you come across dialogues that feature ducks even though not you or your friends own any?

While it is all right to have that laughable moment with your friends, a typo might not fare so well with the higher authorities in an office. Typos generally occur with words that are similar or are spelt similarly. They usually have the same letters in a different order or similar sounding letters in their place. For example – absence and its typo absense. The typo has an ‘s’, which makes it wrong. Such a typo is promptly detected and rectified by the computer, but there are instances where the typo is a word belonging to the dictionary and goes undetected. For example, see and sea. They are both correctly spelt words, but their context of use differs. You cannot say – you sea very well or the see is beautiful. They are both incorrect.

Deer vs Dear

Like the example above, another pair of words that see common usage are deer and dear. These words are homophones i.e., they are a pair of words that sound the same but are spelt differently and mean different things. The word “deer” is used to describe an animal, while the word “dear” is used for a lot of other things, but most importantly, it is used to say that a person or thing is adored or loved. There are more differences between these two terms.

Differences Between Deer and Dear in Tabular Form

Parameters of Comparison

Deer

Dear

Part of speech

Deer is a noun.

Dear can be used as a noun or an adjective.

Definition

Deer is a word used to describe a four-legged animal.

Dear is a word used to describe something that is liked or adored.

Spelling

The word “deer” is spelt with two Es.

The word “dear” is pelt with a single E.

Origin

The word “deer” saw its origin in the 1500s.

The word “dear” saw its origins in the mid-15th century.

Etymology

The word “deer” was derived from Old English “deor”, which means a wild animal or beast.

The word “dear” was derived from Old English “deore”, which means precious or costly.

Example

Following is an example of the use of the word “deer”:

  • I saw a deer near the lake.

Following is an example of the use of the word “dear”:

  • My pet is very dear to me.

Use

The word “deer” can only be used to describe the animal.

The word “dear” is used to address something of value, as an address in a letter, as an exclamation of surprise and also as a way to address someone close to a person.

When do we use “Deer”?

The word “deer” is a noun. It is the name of an animal that is four-legged, hoofed and a herbivore. It originated in the 1500s and was derived from the Old English word, “deor”, which means a wild animal or a beast or any wild quadruped.

“Deer”, as a word, has a speciality in its use. It can be used in both the singular and plural form.

For example:

  1. The deer stares at the people walking by in the park.
  2. The deer look beautiful.

In the first sentence, the word “deer” is used in a singular number. In the second sentence, the word “deer” is used in the plural fashion.

While most commonly people think of a deer as only that four-hooved Bambi from the famous Disney movie of the same name. The deer family, though, is large. The scientific name of the family is Cervidae and has over forty species under it. They typically have two large and two small hooves on each foot.

Male deer are known to have antlers in most of the species and only one species of female deer has antlers (reindeer). They are native to all continents except Antarctica and Australia. They are specialized herbivores. This is reflected in their complex dentistry and digestive organs. They are highly selective feeders of grasses, herbs, lichens, foliage, aquatic plants, woody shoots, fruits and natural ensilage, which is plant food that is low in fibre and high in proteins, and toxicity.

Their high-quality food is for their antlers. The growing antlers of the deer are known to be encased in “velvet” and are highly vascularized with nerve-filled skin that is covered by short hairs. They normally shed after mating season but can be retained in some deer for over a year. While most deer have similar food habits, their anti-predator strategies see a difference. The species that are specialized jumpers prefer to stay close to steep slopes and rugged terrain. This way, they avoid the areas that are frequented by animals that run and jump. The cliff-climber species of deer exploit gradients and altitudes that are closer to others. The family Cervidae is divided into two distinct groups – the Old-World deer and the New World deer. This distinction is based on the geographical evolution of the deer and also their foot structure.

When do we use “Dear”?

The word “dear” is mostly an adjective. But it can also be used as a noun. As an adjective, it is used to describe anything or anyone that is precious and close or is expensive and has value. The latter definition is often used in UK English.

“Dear” also finds its use in most letter correspondences. It is often placed before the name of the person to whom one is addressing the letter. When used as such, it is a polite way of acknowledging the person. In addition, to be used as a greeting, the word “dear” can also be used to express disappointment or sorrow.

As a noun, the word “dear” is used when addressing someone close and liked. It is used to speak to someone in a friendly or affectionate manner. It saw its origins in the mid-15th century and is derived from the Old English word “deore”, which means precious, valuable, expensive. It started being used as an interjectory – oh dear or dear me – in the 1690s. The “Dear John” letters that most men dread were popular at the time of war. A Dear John letter is a letter that is known to be sent to men by their girlfriends or partners to indicate that their romantic relationship is over.

Following are the examples of the use of the word “dear” in a sentence:

As an adjective to describe a person or thing that someone admires or loves.

  • Cooper is a dear friend of mine.
  • At last, I am in my dear bed.

As an adjective, if something or someone is close to one’s heart.

  • This locket is very dear to me; it was my father’s.
  • This topic is very dear to the politicians.

As an adjective to address someone you know or are fond of.

  • My dear fellow, you have got this wrong.
  • Play the piano for as long as you like, my dear girl.

As an adjective, at the beginning of a letter, it is used as a polite address to the person for whom one is writing the letter.

  • Dear Cooper, I have been thinking about you.

As an adjective to say that something is too expensive or costs a lot.

  • I cannot afford them; they are too dear.
  • Chocolates here are much dearer than in the States.

As a convention, generally in British English, it is used in formal letters.

  • Dear Sir/ Madam, this is to inform you of my absence.

As a countable noun, it is used as a sign of affection.

  • You are just like me, dear.
  • “Well, hello, dears.” She called out as she entered the classroom.

As a countable noun, it is used to call someone whom one might find affectionate.

She is such a dear.

As an exclamation to express sorrow, disappointment or surprise.

  • “Oh, dear, how could this happen?” She cried.
  • He glanced at his watch and said, “Dear me, twelve already!”
  • There is also an adverbial form of the word “dear” – “dearly”.

For example:

  • He looked at her hand dearly.
  • Here, the word “dearly” is used as an adverb. Commonly, though, “dear” is used as an adjective.

Main Differences Between Dear and Deer In Points

Following are the main differences between “deer” and “dear”:

  1. The word “deer” is used to describe a four-legged animal or beast commonly found in the wild, while the word “dear” is used to describe something that is precious or holds value.
  2. The word “deer” can only be used as a noun as the name of the animal, whereas the word “dear” can be used as a noun as well as an adjective.
  3. The word “dear” differs from the word “dear” in the way it is spelt. The former has two Es, while the latter has only one.
  4. The word “deer” saw its origin in the 1500s, while the word “dear” came into being in the mid-15th century.
  5. The word “deer” is derived from the Old English “deor”, which means a wild animal or beast. The word “dear”, is derived from the Old English “deore”, which is used for things of value.
  6. The word “deer” has limited use and can only be used as a noun for the name of the animal, while the word “dear” can be used to describe something or someone that is adored and has value. It can also be used to address a person in a letter.
  7. An example of the use of the word “deer” as a noun is as follows: There was a deer in the woods. An example of the use of the word “dear” as a noun is as follows: You are such a dear for doing my chores.
  8. An example of the use of the word “dear” as an adjective is as follows: This ring is very dear to me because it belonged to my grandmother. The word “deer” can only be used as a noun.

Conclusion

The words “deer” and “dear”, are thus, homophones. Words that sound the same but are spelt and mean different things. “Deer” is always a noun and is the name of a herbivorous, four-legged animal that is commonly found in the wild. The deer family is a rather large family with over forty different species. The word “deer” is derived from the Old English word “deor”, which also means a wild animal or beast. “Deer” is also a word that can be used as a singular and a plural word.

“Dear” is a word that is most commonly used as an adjective. It can also be used as a noun and also to express emotions like disappointment and sorrow. It is derived from the Old English word “deore”, which is used to describe something or someone that is loved, cherished or has value. It is also employed at the beginning of letters as a way to address the person it is addressed to politely. “Deer” and “dear” are, thus, very different words and mean very different things. A simple replacement of the letter E can change the meaning of your sentence. Autocorrect might occasionally slip up and cause more problems while typing such words. A review of every draft is an absolute must before sending any document or message to avoid such mistakes. These are seemingly small mistakes but are major blunders in truth. They might serve to make you sound unprofessional and inept. You only have to be very careful. Especially if someday, in the future, you go on to have a deer that becomes dear to you. You can then secretly rejoice in the confusion across peoples’ faces when you speak about your dear deer. 

References

  1. https://www.etymonline.com/word/deer
  2. https://www.britannica.com/animal/deer
  3. https://www.etymonline.com/search?q=dear
  4. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/dear
  5. https://proofed.co.uk/writing-tips/word-choice-dear-vs-deer/
  6. https://www.grammar.com/dear_vs._deer

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"Difference Between Deer and Dear." Diffzy.com, 2022. Fri. 09 Dec. 2022. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-deer-and-dear-366>.



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