Word Confusion: Compliment vs. Complement
Dear Copy Bitch: Any tricks for keeping compliment and complement straight in my thick skull?
—Confused in Colorado
Answer: Dear Confused: Think “complete” when thinking “complement,” which means “to go with or complete” (when used as a verb) or “something that completes” (when used as a noun). As a trick, just think of the “e”–there are two in complete and two in complement. Think of flattery when thinking of “compliment” as in “I love receiving compliments.”
1. “I love it when George compliments me on my fashion sense and sassiness.”
2. “I think a George Clooney Love Nest would complement my lifestyle quite nicely.”