These four homophones have very different meanings and uses.
The noun rite refers to a formal ceremony or religious practice ("the rite of baptism").
A more common word is right, which can be a noun, verb, adjective, or adverb. Right has various meanings, including correct, fitting, and direct ("the right answer," "turn right," "the woman on the right").
The noun wright refers to a person who builds or repairs something (as in playwright).
The verb write means to mark, form letters, or compose.
- Retirement ceremonies and farewell parties are part of the rites of passage when employees retire or resign.
- "Perhaps it is better to be irresponsible and right, than to be responsible and wrong." (Winston Churchill)
- Gus drove to the next block and turned right.
- A master shipwright is a person who has learned to use his skills with precision and is capable of teaching them to others.
- If you want to be a writer, you must write.
Comic Observations: "Write Written Right"
Write we know is written right,
When we see it written write;
But when we see it written wright,
We know it is not written right:
For write, to have it written right,
Must not be written right or wright,
Nor yet should it be written rite;
But write, for so 'tis written right.
(Gleanings From the Harvest Fields of Literature, Science and Art: A Melange of Excerpta, Curious, Humorous, and Instructive, 2nd ed., collated by Charles C. Bombaugh. T. Newton Kurtz, 1860)
(a) The bear looked _____ at me and then slowly walked away.
(b) The _____ of passage was a three-day ritual to welcome young people of the village to the world of adulthood.
(c) Merdine made up her mind _____ then and there to go back to school.
(d) "History will be kind to me for I intend to _____ it." (Winston Churchill)
(e) The only _____ thing to do was to go back home and apologize.