elicit and illicit

The words elicit and illicit sound similar, but they mean very different things!

Illicit means forbidden or unlawful; elicit is similar to evoke and means “to draw out.”


(verb): The announcement elicited cheers from the crowd.

Jack made a funny face, hoping to elicit a smile from Jennifer.


(adjective): The illicit photographs were removed soon after they were posted on the site.

Her illicit activities led to her downfall.

Licit is a word that means “permissible”; hence, with the addition of the prefix il- the meaning changes to not permissible, as with words such as illegal and illogical.


1 thought on “elicit and illicit

  1. Pingback: naked prose | Write It Right!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.