This is part of the dif­fer­ence between series.

Recent­ly, some­one asked me to explain the dif­fer­ence between the words bear and bare. Here’s the dif­fer­ence between the two.


Bear is not only a noun that refers to a large fur­ry mam­mal; it’s also a verb that means to car­ry some­thing, to endure, or to tol­er­ate.

  • We should bear one another’s bur­dens.
  • Our base­ment walls can’t bear the weight of a third storey addi­tion.
  • I could bear his cyn­i­cism no longer.


Bare, on the oth­er hand, is a verb that refers to uncov­er­ing.

  • Through tears and sobs, he bare all his trans­gres­sions to her.
  • Every time she laughed, she bared her bril­liant­ly white teeth.
  • Rolling up his sleeve, he bared his secret tat­too.

An easy way to remem­ber this is that bare, as an adjec­tive, is syn­ony­mous with naked, as in “bare bum” for exam­ple.

Which words do you con­fuse? Let me know in the com­ments below.

Inter­est­ed in more gram­mar tips like this? Sign up for our free month­ly newslet­ter.

About Kim Siever

I am a copy­writer and copy­ed­i­tor. I blog on writ­ing tips most­ly, but I some­times throw in my thoughts about run­ning a small busi­ness. Fol­low me on Twit­ter at @hotpepper.

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