Word Choice: Peace vs. Piece
  • 2-minute read
  • 27th August 2020

Word Choice: Peace vs. Piece

The words “peace” and “piece” sound the same, but you won’t want to use the wrong spelling in the wrong place! In this post, to help out, we’ll look at how to use both terms correctly in your writing.

Peace (Free from Disturbance or Conflict)

“Peace” is a noun that refers to being free from interruptions or concerns:

I enjoy the peace and quiet of the countryside.

I like to eat my lunch in peace.

More specifically, it can refer to the absence of war or conflict:

He always tried to keep the peace when his friends argued.

The peace treaty ended the conflict.

In both cases, however, this word is related to a freedom from disturbance.

Piece (Part of Something)

As a noun, “piece” has several meanings, including:

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  • A part of a whole (e.g., Would you like a piece of pie?)
  • An item of a particular type (e.g., Can you hand me a piece of paper?)
  • A coin with a stated value (e.g., He lost a fifty-cent piece)
  • Something created by an artist, musician, or writer (e.g., I’ve been practicing a new classical piece for the cello)

But “piece” can also be a verb meaning “assemble something from its parts”:

We pieced the broken vase back together again.

This verb use is related to the first noun definition above (i.e., when you “piece” something together, you assemble its “pieces”).

Summary: Peace or Piece?

These words sound the same, but they mean completely different things:

  • Peace is always a noun and refers to the absence of war or disturbance.
  • Piece can be a noun (typically meaning “part of a whole”) or a verb (meaning “assemble something from its parts”).

Interestingly, “piece” is also a Scottish dialect term for a sandwich:

I made a piece (sandwich) from two pieces of bread.

Even if you’re not Scottish, though, you can use this sentence as a reminder that “piece” applies to a thing of a particular type or part of a whole! And if you would ever like any extra help to make sure your writing is error free, you can always submit a document for proofreading.

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