Common mistake not unlike (similar, alike)

Common Mistake: "Not Unlike"

One common mistake that many people make when writing is using the phrase "not unlike" to mean "similar" or "alike." However, this usage is incorrect and can confuse the reader.

Understanding the Mistake

The phrase "not unlike" is often used as a way to express that two things are similar or alike. However, the use of "not" in this phrase creates a double negative that can cause confusion.

For example, consider the following sentence:

"The two sisters were not unlike each other."

In this sentence, the use of "not unlike" suggests that the sisters are not similar or alike. However, the intended meaning is that they are similar.

Using a double negative in this way can create ambiguity and make it unclear what the writer is trying to convey. It is better to use a single positive word like "similar" or "alike" to express the intended meaning.

Correct Usage

To correct this mistake, simply use a single positive word like "similar" or "alike" to convey the intended meaning.

For example:

"The two sisters were similar to each other."


"The two sisters were alike in many ways."

Linguix Grammar Checker

To avoid common grammar mistakes like using "not unlike" incorrectly, you can use a reliable grammar checking tool like Linguix. Linguix can help you identify and correct errors in your writing, ensuring that your message comes across clearly and effectively.

not unlike (similar, alike) mistake examples

  • Incorrect:
    Sisters were not unlike.

    Sisters were similar|alike.

  • Correct:
    Sisters were alike.
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