Stationary vs Stationery: Confused Words

The English language includes many confusing words, right? We did affect vs effect before, today we are going to talk about another confused words pair – stationary vs stationery.

The only difference of a single letter can completely change the meaning of the word. Here, only a single letter (a or e) difference can make a huge impact on your writing changing its meaning entirely.

Let’s take a deep dive into the meaning of these two confused words so that next time you start writing, you know the difference and where to use stationary and where to use stationery.

What is the meaning of the word Stationary?

Stationary is an adjective meaning “not moving”. It is used to describe a person or an object or any situation that is still, without any motion. Remember the game we used to play in the school when the other team member says “STATUE” and we stood still without any movement?

An example sentence of correct usage of the word stationary –

As the storm was approaching, I ran and jumped into my stationary car.

How you can remember when to use Stationary –

If you are writing about something that is still, without any motion or movement, or any situation that doesn’t change, then you should use the word stationary.

Remember, stationary is an adjective that is used to describe a non-moving person or object or a never-changing situation.

What is the meaning of the word Stationery –

As kids, we have been often told by our parents to bring papers from a stationery shop. You also might have visited one recently. Even while working in offices, we get stationery like a pen, notepad, etc. as a joining gift, right?

Stationery is a noun that describes a collection of things such as envelopes, papers, and things that can be used to write letters or cards.

An example sentence that will let know what stationery means is as follows –

I saw that the printer was going low on paper, so I bought some stationery from a nearby shop.

Another example of using the word stationery correctly would be –

I got some complementary stationery from the office as a joining gift!   

How you can remember when to use Stationery –

As discussed above, stationery is a noun that means a collection of paper, envelopes, and other things that are needed to write letters or cards.

A good way of remembering when to use the word stationery is by linking it to paper. If you look closely, both stationery and paper have -er common.

Stationary vs Stationery: Conclusion

In this article, we discussed the confused words pair, Stationary vs Stationery, their meanings, example sentences, and their correct usage so that you don’t get confused from now on while writing.

In a nutshell, if you are writing and dealing with something that is not in motion or moving, then you have to use the word Stationary with an ‘a’.

On the other hand, if you are talking about a collection of paper, envelopes, etc, then you should be using stationery with an ‘e’.

A good rule of thumb to remember stationery is by linking it to paper as both have ‘-er’ common.  

Do you also get confused while writing with stationary vs stationery words pair? Let us know in the comments section below. How do you remember when to use stationary or stationery?

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