Grammar Apart vs. A Part: Do You Know the Difference? |
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

Apart vs. A Part: Do You Know the Difference?

There are some aspects of American English that can be fairly described as “confusing.” That’s certainly the case when one word can be separated into two and result in a different meaning.

Even native speakers of American English can be puzzled by the difference between apart (one word) and a part (two words). Do you know how to apply each one correctly? Let’s make sure you do.

The Meaning of the Word Apart

As one word, apart means “separated.” It’s often used with the word from to describe something as “apart from” (“separate from”) something else.

Examples
Our planes leave two hours apart so we will arrive at different times.
Apart from the extreme heat, our visit to the beach was wonderful.
The towns are in two different counties even though they are only five miles apart from each other.

The Meaning of A Part as Two Words

When a part is split into two words it means “one piece,” “one portion,” or “one component.” It implies a segment of something larger.

Examples

The new coach welcomed me, and it made me feel like a part of the team.
We are going to repair the truck, but are waiting for a part to arrive from the dealer.
A part of me will always feel like I belong in my hometown.

 

Pop Quiz

Applying what you understand about apart and a part, select the correct usage in the sentences that follow.

  1. I have no complaints about that restaurant, [apart / a part] from the limited menu.
  2. Sheila felt that [apart / a part] of the credit should have gone to her department.
  3. Wouldn’t it be hard to stay [apart / a part] from your pets for a whole month?
  4. Unfortunately, long waiting times are usually [apart / a part] of the college application process.
  5. [Apart / a part] from the delay, was your flight a pleasant one?

 

Pop Quiz Answers

  1. I have no complaints about that restaurant, apart from the limited menu.
  2. Sheila felt that a part of the credit should have gone to her department.
  3. Wouldn’t it be hard to stay apart from your pets for a whole month?
  4. Unfortunately, long waiting times are usually a part of the college application process.
  5. Apart from the delay, was your flight a pleasant one?

 

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