Different between Isle and Aisle | Pair of words

The words “isle” and “aisle” are homophones, which means they have similar pronunciation but have different spellings and meanings. Both of the words are most confusing words for the readers and listeners because their pronunciation is not as they are spelled. The letter ‘s’ is silent in both letters that makes them homophones. We will discuss difference between Isle and Aisle in this article. Moreover, we will also explain the difference between an aisle and a passageway and difference between isle and island.

Meanings of Isle and Aisle

  • Isle: a small island.
  • Aisle: a passage or walkway separating sections of seats or two parties in a legislature

Etymology of Isle and Aisle

  • Isle comes from Latin word insula.
  • Aisle comes from French word aile.

Pronunciation of Isle and Aisle

Both words homophones and pronounced in a same way. The letter s is silent in both words and sound of letter ‘i’ and ‘l’ is audible. The word Aisle has an additional letter ‘a’ at the start of word but only ‘i’ and ‘l’ are pronounced. The phonetic transcription of both words is /ˈī(-ə)l/.

Definition of Aisle

Aisle is used as a noun in English language where it denotes a passage or lane between rows of seats in a building such as a church or theatre, an aircraft, or train or a lane between two parallel shelves. We can see an aisle everywhere around us like in a supermarket, parliaments, library, churches, factory, courtrooms, warehouse, etc.

In factories and warehouses, an aisle could have storage pallets to place equipment to its right and left. In offices, aisles could be separating work areas or two lines of desk/chairs placed separated by a lane in a waiting area.

Difference between a Passageway and an Aisle

We should keep In mind that the word aisle is not a passageway. Because, an aisle is not the narrow passage between two rows of seats in a movie theatre, stadium, or auditorium if it has a cover on it like a tunnel, a tube, or cave. A passageway has two sides like aisle but it has an enclosed roof or top like a tunnel, a tube or cave.  On the other hand, an aisle misses out a roof or top.

Example of Passageways  

A hallway, tunnel, tube, and cave are the examples of passageways. Although both have similarities. An aisle also has a roof but the roof or top is common roof like in a church where all lines of chairs or desks and aisle have same roof or similarly in a bus or airplane.

Synonyms of Aisle

Synonym of aisle are corridor, passage, walkway, lane, path and alley.

Example of Aisle in Sentences

  • Jack wandered round the aisles and found a beautiful clock.
  • Rose spend many hours at supermarkets, wandering through the aisles.
  • Your bag is placed in cupboard no 12 over the south aisle.
  • The cookies are in Aisle 7.
  • A bottle of wine fell off the lower shelves and rolled into the aisle of the store.
  • Due to summer holidays, the aisle in the bus was crowded with tourists.
  • I always prefer ail seat in bus.


Definition of Isle

An isle is an alternate naming word for “island”. “Isle” and “island” are noun that represent same thing and can be used interchangeably.

Difference between Isle and Island

Generally, it is believed that an isle is used for small island. Isle is also used for a remote piece of land inside the sea. The small island like Ireland, the Hebrides, and the Isle of Man are known as isle. On the other hand, large islands such as Sri Lanka, Japan, Indonesia, Maldives, and Seychelles are called “islands” and not “isles”.  In a nutshell, “isle” and “island” are synonymous and can be used interchangeably.

Name of some common Isles

  • British Isles
  • The Isle of Mull
  • The Isles of Scilly
  • The Isle of Arran
  • The Isle of Wight

Name of some common Islands

  • Out Islands
  • Alexander Island
  • San Salvador Island
  • Andros Island
  • Stonington Island

Example of word Isle in sentences

  • I want to rent a house on shore to explore the remote isles.
  • British Isles were looking very small from the window of the airplane.
  • I will visit the Isle of Mull during summer vacation.
  • Our government decided to make an airport on a remote isle.


I hope that now it will be clear to you that what the difference between aisle and isle is. Aisle and isle, both are homophones, which they are pronounced the same but use of both word is different. An aisle is a walkway between two rows of seats, shelves or pallets. An isle is a small island.