Illicit vs. Elicit. Both are important SAT/ACT vocabulary words to know and they're practically homophones - but they have VERY different meanings.
You certainly don't want to confuse the two in your SAT or ACT essay!
Here's how I remember which is which:
ILLicit is an adjective for something that is illegal or something that might make others feel ill. So for example: illicit trade, illicit gambling, illicit underground associations.
Elicit is a verb for when you're trying to get someone to express or evoke something. So for example: elicit an emotion, elicit excitement, elicit a reaction.
Generally, I just remember that illicit is the illegal one. And then all other times, I just use elicit.
Looking for more?
- Check out our other commonly confused words
- Find out how to learn words without studying
- Read some of our other SAT/ACT study tips