English on the Internet - Vocabulary

False friends 2

False friends are certain English "tricky" words that we think mean the same as similar words in Czech, but the meaning is different. The confusion might be because of a chance similarity in spelling.

1. camping
It is often confused with: camp-site

We like to go camping in Croatia.
We found a lovely camp-site there to put up our tent.

2. to be boring
It is often confused with: to be bored

If you bore others it means you are boring.
That party was terrible. I was bored.
Are you bored? We hope you aren't.

3. sympathetic
It is often confused with: nice

The police were very sympathetic to my complaint about the noise but said they could do nothing about it.
Peter is usually rather impatient and unfriendly, but I must say he was very sympathetic when I told him about my family problems.
She is a very nice little girl. Everyone likes her.
He threw a nice party. I enjoyed it.

4. actual (real, topical)
It is often confused with: present (now, current)

I've known many rich men, but he is the only actual millionaire I've met.
Bush and Reagan are former American Presidents. Who is the present one?
He used to work in advertising, but his present job is in journalism.

5. adequate - náležitý or sufficient
It is often confused with: suitable - vhodný or convenient

Rice-growing can only be successful if there is adequate rainfall.
Make sure you have adequate money for the trip. 5000 Crowns should be enough.
I'll come at eight, or any other suitable time you suggest.
Do you think the dress is suitable for tonight's party, or is it too formal?

Top of this page

© September 1999 English on the Internet www.aj.cz