Peek-peak or pique?

Peek, peak or pique?

English On The Go: Peek, peak or pique?

In the latest English On The Go episode, we look at the homophones peek, peak and pique.

Peek, peak and pique are examples of homophones.

To peek can mean to take a quick look.

He had a peek at his birthday cake when no one was around.

A common term is sneak peek. That means to take a quick look secretly.

This week, we’re getting a sneak peek of the new cultural centre that’s being built in our suburb.

Note the spelling though – it’s spelt sneak peek, not sneak peak! That brings us to the word peak.

peak is the highest point. For example, the highest point of a mountain. In this case, it’s a noun.

We reached the mountain peak after three days of climbing.

As a verb, it means to reach a high point.

The band’s popularity peaked in the 1990s.

Peaky is an adjective. It can mean unwell or poorly.

I’m feeling a bit peaky today. I’m going to go home now and rest.

To pique can mean to create interest.

We’re discussing confusing words like peak and peek. Have I piqued your interest in this topic yet?

So how do you remember the difference?

Here’s one way:

  • Look at the work peek– it has two Es, like two eyes. So peek has to do with looking.
  • On the other hand, peak has an A in it. Like the mountain peak. So peak is used to talk about the highest point.
  • And as for pique, there’s a ‘I’ in the word just like the word interest. So if you’re talking about creating interest, then it’s pique.


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