They may seem insignificant and small, but they are very likely to mislead English speakers. Many people can not explain the e.g. vs. i.e. conundrum. Both have different meanings. Both are Latin-based abbreviations. E.g. stands for exempli gratia in Latin. I.e. stands for id est in Latin.
Latin may be an ancient language, but we still use a lot of Latin abbreviations today. These two abbreviations are among the most sought-after abbreviations in dictionaries. As can be seen here, they are often confused with each other. Let’s learn the differences between them.
Differences Between E.g. and I.e
E.g. means “for example.” Used to give one or more examples. Usually used to show an example of the situation mentioned in the previous sentence. It is also used to introduce broader or more specific examples of a topic. You can think of the word “example” to easily remember the meaning of this abbreviation.
Sample Sentences on E.g.
- You can do various activities in the summer (e.g., swimming, camping, going on vacation with friends).
- I like to eat vegetables (e.g., zucchini, eggplant, carrots, cauliflower).
- I have shirts in many colors (e.g., pink, black, brown, beige, burgundy, white).
- There are many successful football teams in the World (e.g., Liverpool, Manchester United, Juventus).
- There are many car brands produced by Germany (e.g., BMW, Audi, Mercedes, Volkswagen).
I.e. stand for “that is” or “in other words.” It is used to express something you have stated before, again, and in a different way. Used to clarify the previous statement. It is a more precise statement than e.g. To easily remember the meaning of this abbreviation, you can think of the word “in” in the phrase “in other words.”
Sample Sentences on I.e.
- When the pandemic is over, I will go to the place I want so much, i.e. America.
- Our daughter seems unhappy these days and she is constantly on the phone with her best friend i.e., Carla.
- My family wanted me to be a doctor, but I chased my dreams, and I studied what I want most, i.e., translation studies.
- Mom said she’ll make my favorite meal tonight i.e., lasagna.
- When I come home from school, I will watch the new episode of my favorite TV show i.e., How I Met Your Mother.
If they are not at the beginning of the sentence, they must be written in lowercase. One should not use abbreviations when starting a sentence. Instead of using abbreviations, use phrases that correspond to these abbreviations.
- Put a point after each letter.
- Put a comma after the second point.
- You can put your abbreviation in parentheses or within the sentence. This is entirely up to you.
The abbreviations of Latin words are usually written in italics, but you should not write these abbreviations in italics because they are often used in English.
FAQ on E.g. vs. I.e.
i.e. the abbreviation should never be used at the beginning or end of the sentence. It should always be in the middle of the sentence.
You should not use this abbreviation in official documents. You can use “that is” or “in other words” instead.
If you have used i.e. in a sentence, you must put a comma after the period.
No. Although the abbreviations are Latin in origin, they are used so often in English that they are now part of English. For this reason, you should never write in italics.
This is entirely up to you. If you think it would be redundant to do so, you can simply skip it.
Conclusion on E.g. vs. I.e.
In this article, we explained to you the usage differences between e.g. vs i.e. and what you should pay attention to. Still not sure about when to use which? Then we suggest you get Grammarly Premium Free Trial; you will no longer be confused about which abbreviation to use until your trial expires.