Palate vs. Palette vs. Pallet

  angbeenc  —  Grammar Tips

Ever come across words in your writing experiences which sound the same? However and in whatever accent you pronounce them, they always seem to sound exactly alike. Their spellings and meanings are different and you often confuse these words due to their close resemblance. These words are known as homophones (homo = same, phone = sound). Palate, palette and pallet are homophones to one another and sometimes cause of confusions and misunderstandings among beginners of English language. If you are victimized from this type of misunderstandings or want to gain a fair idea of what these homophones mean and how you can differentiate one from the other, keep reading. This article will provide all you need to know about palate, palette and pallet.


Palate originated from late Middle English: from Latin palatum. Palette originated in late 18th century: from French, diminutive of pale ‘shovel’, from Latin pala ‘spade’. Pallet originated from Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French paillete, from paille ‘straw’, from Latin palea.

Palate as noun:

Palate is used as a noun in English language where it means the roof of the mouth, separating the cavities of the mouth and nose in vertebrates.

Palate is one part of the oral cavity of mammals.

Palate is also defined as a person's ability to distinguish between and appreciate different flavors. This meaning originated from the first one and diversified into distinguishing characteristics of tastes and flavors.

A fine range of drink for sophisticated palates were served at the party.


Sometime the flavor of wine or beer is also called palate. A wine with a zingy, peachy palate is like by few.


Palette as noun:

Palette is used as a noun in English language where it means a thin board or slab on which an artist lays and mixes colors. The range of colors used by a particular artist or in a particular picture is also known as palette.

Pollock's hard, bright palette is very famous.

In computer graphics the range of colors or shapes available to the user is also called palette. Palette is also represented by the range or variety of tonal or instrumental color in a musical piece.

He commands the sort of tonal palette which this music needs.

Pallet as noun:

Pallet is also used as a noun in English language, all the more reason to confuse us. A straw mattress or a crude or makeshift bed is known as pallet. Pallet is also defined as a portable platform on which goods can be stacked, stored, and moved.

He filled the pallet with flour sacs.

A flat wooden blade with a handle, used to shape clay or plaster is also a pallet. A projection on a machine part, serving to change the mode of motion of a wheel is also termed as pallet. A pallet is also the diminutive of the pale, a narrow vertical strip, usually borne in groups of two or three.


The snaptastic house-made sausage sported a fresh jalapeno and lime aioli that perked and cleansed the palate. [Chicago Sun-Times]

The 18-month-old has been in the operating theatre at the Royal Children’s Hospital three times since his birth to repair his cleft lip and palate. [Herald Sun]

Rosy-toned table linens, napkin rings and utensils sweeten up a palette heavy on black and gold. [Globe and Mail]

A thousand hues of green, a patina of browns and a palette of every colour we know. [Guardian]

Then it is dried, wrapped in plastic, placed atop a pallet, and driven northeast on Interstate 59. [The Atlantic]

The shipment had been rejected by a company because of damage in shipping, one pallet showing a number of boxes crunched on one side. [Herald Mail]