Quiet vs. Quite

How to use "quiet" and "quite" correctly

This is an entry on my list of Common Errors in English Usage. Visit the main page for direct links to additional entries.

The distinction between the adjective quiet (“silent; making or having little noise”) and the adverb quite (“completely; really; to a considerable degree”) is simple, but many students fail to catch this error in their writing:

Your house is quiet quite lovely.

One of the best and simplest bits of advice I’ve ever received is to read your own writing out loud; there are many typos and grammar errors (among other issues) that your eyes and ears together will catch but your eyes alone might miss. This error is a prime example of that phenomenon.

Related Resources

Common Errors in English Usage: Errors in diction and idiom commonly made by native speakers of English

List of Common Errors in English Usage (PDF): Printable version of the complete list

Common Grammar Errors: A list of common errors in grammar (topics like subject-verb agreement and parallelism) as distinct from usage

List of Common Errors in English Usage: PDF version

© 2006, 2008, and 2019 C. Brantley Collins, Jr.