In the English language, there are many words that look similar and can be confusing, especially to ESL learners.
MELLOW / MELODIOUS
Mellow: mature; soft and pure; rich and full.
e.g. As he continues to age, he become more mellow and compassionate.
Melodious: tuneful; pleasant to the ear.
e.g. He voice is melodious; he should take up singin
SEDATIVE / SEDENTARY
Sedative: calming or soothing.
e.g. The doctor gave her some sedative medicine to put her to sleep.
Sedentary: accustomed to sitting; physically inactive.
e.g His sedentary work — sitting in front of the computer — took a toll on his health.
e.g. Avoid a sedentary lifestyle even if you are approaching 60..
GENTEEL / GENTLE
Genteel: well-bred, polite; imitating the lifestyle of the rich.
e.g. Your friend is genteel. Is he very rich?
e.g. All along he has been living in genteel poverty. He is not practical.
Gentle: kind, friendly, mild.
e.g. Be gentle to my puppy.
DISPOSABLE / INDISPOSED
Disposable: can’t be removed or got rid of.
e.g. This machine is disposable; we can do without it
Indisposed: not feeling well; unwilling to
e.g. You look indisposed. Is there something wrong with you?
e.g. Many people are indisposed to working on weekends.
Terminable: can be ended.
e.g. Your employment is only temporary and terminable at any time.
Terminal: at the end.
e.g. The doctor told him that he had terminal cancer.
DECORATIVE / DECOROUS
Decorative: having an artistic or showy effect.
e.g. The ballroom with all the ribbons and flowers are very decorative.
Decorous: showing good taste.
e.g. The Princess looks decorous in that simple but beautiful dress.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau