Words containing ie or ei

When you grab something do you sieze it or seize it? Does your aunt have a niece or a neice? That German word for song, is it Lieder or Leider? Did the ancient Egyptians use hieroglyphs or heiroglyphs? Are you the heir or hier to your rich uncle's fortune?

It's hard to remember how to spell words containing ie or ei. We often get those letters the wrong way round. The old rule about 'i before e except after c' does not always work. There are quite a lot of German and French words and names to confuse us.

To help you, I have compiled a list of about 300 words with ie or ei in them.

A

achieve

acquiesce

adieu

aggrieve

agreeing

alien

alienate

ancient

anxiety

apiece

atheism

atheistic

audience

B

Bahrein

beige

being

biennial

belied

belief

believe

besiege

bier

blueing

bonhomie

brassiere

brazier

brief

briefcase

briefs

C

caffeine

calorie

canoeing

cashier

cavalier

ceiling

chief

cities

clavier

client

clientele

conceit

conceive

concierge

copies

coterie

crozier, crosier

cuneiform

D

deceit

deceitful

deceive

defied

defies

deify

deign

deism

deist

deity

diehard

dieldrin

diesel

diet

dietary

dietetic

E

eerie

eerier

eeriest

efficiency

efficient

efficiently

eider

eiderdown

eight

eighteen

eighth

Einstein

either

Epstein

expedient

eyrie

Ezekiel

F

fancier

farrier

feign

feint

field

fiend

fierce

fierier

fierily

fiery

fiesta

fiftieth

foreign

foreigner

forfeit

fortieth

freight

friend

frieze

frontier

furrier

G

gaiety

genie

glacier

glazier

grazier

grief

grievance

grieve

grievous

H

hacienda

hairiest

hankies

heighten

heighten

heir

hierarchy

heirloom

hied

hieropglyph

hieroglyphics

hierophant

Holbein

hotelier

howbeit

hygiene

hygienic

I

impatience

impatient

impiety

implied

inveigh

inveigle

K

Kiev

L

leisure

lenience

lenient

leniently

lied

Lieder

liege

lieu

lingerie

Lorelei

M

Madeira

Marseilles

medieval, mediæval

milieux

mischief

mischievous

moiety

Molière

monsieur

muddied

muddier

N

neigh

neighbour, neighbor

neither

nescient

niece

Nietzsche

notoriety

nucleic

nutrient

O

obedience

obedient

obeisant

onomatopoeia

orient

oriental

oriented

orienteering

osiers

outweigh

P

pantheism

patience

patient

patiently

perceive

piebald

piece

piecemeal

pier

pierce

piety

pixies

plebeian

Pleiades

pliers

Pompeian

Pompeii

Poseidon

prairie

premier

premiere

preview

priest

priesthood

priestly

propriety

protein

prurient

Q

quiet

quietude

quotient

R

rabies

Raleigh

receipt

receive

recipient

Reichstag

reign

reimpose

rein

reindeer

reins

reprieve

requiem

resilient

retrieval

retrieve

reveille

review

Rheims

Riviera

roomier

S

salient

saltier

sapience

scabies

Schweitzer

science

Seine

seizure

sentient

seventieth

sheik

sheikdom

sheikh

shied

shield

shriek

siege

siesta

sieve

seize

sixtieth

skein

skier

skies

sleigh

sleight

sobriety

societal

society

soldier

spaniel

species

spied

spiel

surfeit

T

Tangier

their

theism

theist

theistic

therein

thief

thieve

thieving

thievish

tiepin, tie-pin

tier

tiered

triennial

U

unifies

untie

unveil

V

variegate

varietal

varieties

veil

veiled

vein

veined

vernier

Viennese

Vietnam

view

W

wearied

wearier

wearies

weigh

weight

weir

weird

weirdo

wherein

wield

wieldy

wittier

worrier

Y

yield

Z

Zeitgeist

 

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