Cent, Scent, and Sent

Commonly Confused Words

Loose stacks of US pennies, full frame
Jocko never sent a cent home or appreciated the scent of fresh flowers. Epoxydude / Getty Images

The words cent, scent, and sent are homophones: they sound alike but have different meanings.

The noun cent refers to a coin equal to the hundredth part of a dollar: a penny.

As both a noun and a verb, scent refers to an odor or the sense of smell.

Sent is the past and past-participle form of the verb to send.

Examples

  • Texas oil was hardly worth a cent a barrel until Standard Oil discovered a way to refine it.​
  • "No man can taste the fruits of autumn while he is delighting his scent with the flowers of spring." (Samuel Johnson)​
  • After two weeks in the hospital, the patient was sent home.

Practice Exercises

(a) I _____ my aunt a thank-you note and some flowers.

(b) I paid my daughter one _____ for each dandelion she pulled out of the lawn.

(c) The _____ of roses filled the cool morning air.

Answers to Practice Exercises

Answers to Practice Exercises: Cent, Scent, and Sent

(a) I sent my aunt a thank-you note and some flowers.

(b) I paid my daughter one cent for each dandelion she pulled out of the lawn.

(c) The scent of roses filled the cool morning air.

Glossary of Usage: Index of Commonly Confused Words

Format
mla apa chicago
Your Citation
Nordquist, Richard. "Cent, Scent, and Sent." ThoughtCo, Apr. 10, 2017, thoughtco.com/cent-scent-and-sent-1689337. Nordquist, Richard. (2017, April 10). Cent, Scent, and Sent. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/cent-scent-and-sent-1689337 Nordquist, Richard. "Cent, Scent, and Sent." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/cent-scent-and-sent-1689337 (accessed May 21, 2018).