Grammar Monster
Grammar Monster

Peace or Piece?

The Quick Answer
What is the difference between peace and piece?

Peace is a noun that means freedom from disturbance or a period in which there is no war or aggression.

As a noun, piece means a portion. It can also refer to an artistic creation (e.g., a piece of music).
As a verb, to piece means to assemble something from several parts.

Peace and Piece

Occasionally, there is confusion over the words peace and piece. These words are homonyms (i.e., they sound identical), but their meanings are very different.

Peace

The word peace is a noun that denotes a period in which there is no war. It also describes freedom from disturbance or calmness.

Examples:
  • We make war so that we may live in peace.
  • Barbecue may not be the road to world peace, but it's a start.

Piece

The word piece can be used as a noun or a verb. When used as a noun, piece means a portion or section of something. It also describes a written, musical, or artistic creation (e.g., a lovely piece of music). As a verb, it means to assemble or construct something from several parts. It is usually seen in the form "to piece together".

Examples:
  • A hexagonal piece of cheese is a lot better than a square piece of cheese.
  • (Here, piece means portion or slice.)
  • I'm learning the oboe - just single notes, not an entire piece of music.
  • (Here, piece is describing a musical creation.)
  • I am a self-taught guitarist. I just try to piece together passages that have some melodic value!
  • (Here is an example of piece being used as a verb.)
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