People tend to interchange the words connote and denote since they rhyme and refer to meanings. However, these two terms have different definitions. This post will help you distinguish between the two.
The word denote is used as a verb which means “to be a mark or sign of,” “to indicate,” or “to mean.”
AAP: New Laws Do Not Denote Marijuana Use as Benign
Monthly Prescribing Reference
Immigration Reform News 2017: DHS Memos Denote Tougher Immigration and Border Policies, Order the Wall Built
New historic marker denotes old ‘Manassas Village Colored School’
On the other hand, the word connote is used as a verb meaning “to imply or suggest an idea or feeling in addition to the literal or primary meaning.”
“Does it connote a softening in the hard but appropriate approach he had adopted towards Pakistan after the Uri attack in September last year?”
‘Helmets connote protection and anonymity’
The Express Tribune
“The change is intended to connote the variety’s sweet taste, creamy texture and Mexican roots, and to make it more accessible to shoppers.”
It would be helpful to remember that if you are referring to the literal meaning of a word, you should use the term denote but if you are referring to an implied meaning of a word, you should opt for connote. Take for example the sentences below:
- His shirt is green.
- He is still green as a team captain.
While the first sentence denotes that his shirt is green in color, the term green in the second sentence connotes that he is still inexperienced as a team captain. Hopefully, this post has helped you understand how to use the words connote and denote properly.