Yes, these words sound alike; they’re homophones, after all! But they mean two different things, and since I recently saw one of them in a post when the other one was meant, I figured we might as well take a look at them.
Pried is the past tense of the verb “to pry,” which has several meanings:
- To raise, move, or force with a pry (a lever of some sort)
- To draw forth or obtain with difficulty
- To look closely and inquisitively or inquire presumptuously; peer or snoop
Examples of correct usage:
- Anne pried open the box carefully.
- John pried the door open with a lot of force!
- Our local “busybody” pried into the newcomers’ lives endlessly!
Pride, on the other hand, as a noun can mean:
- A sense of one’s own proper dignity or value; self-respect
- Pleasure or satisfaction taken in an achievement, possession, or association
- Arrogant or disdainful conduct or treatment; haughtiness
- A group of lions
As a verb, it means to indulge in feelings of self satisfaction.
Some examples of correct usage:
- The Smiths’ parental pride was clearly showing at the school play.
- The returning soldiers are their town’s pride.
- Pride goeth before a fall.
- We saw a pride of lions during our safari in Kenya.
- Frank prides himself on his social media skills.
So although you may not use these words often, it helps to use them correctly when you do.