When it comes to best PTE classes in Bangalore as well as Chennai and Coimbatore, Sahasriya leads the way with over 2500 successful students thus far. In Bengaluru or Chennai-Velachery and Porur or Coimbatore, the best success rate destination for English courses always ends up at Sahasriya. Thats why Sahasriya provides value to students through its Interesting English series too. Everyday’s note on important aspects of English language is a standing example of narrating experiences of best PTE classes in Bangalore and other locations from Sahasriya. Today, it is about ‘Illegible’ and ‘Unreadable’.

If you have ever read a seven-year-old’s handwriting, you know that it is illegible. But is the child’s writing also unreadable?

These two words are often used as synonyms. While both of them describe qualities of poor writing, they refer to different aspects of writing, and cannot be properly substituted for one another.

When to Use Illegible

Best PTE classes IllegibleWhat does illegible mean? Illegible is an adjective that describes sloppy or distorted writing that is not plain or clear enough to read.

Here are some examples,

  • My son is in third standard, and his cursive is illegible.
  • John spilled coffee onto his book, making the pages illegible.
  • The new logo uses a terrible font that makes the company name illegible.

As you can see, if you have sloppy handwriting, your words may be illegible, but it doesn’t mean your prose is bad.

Humans have been using the written word for millennia. The words on some ancient documents are too faded to be made out, or the parchments have been damaged by water, smearing the ink. These manuscripts may have been fine prose, but time and the elements have rendered them illegible.

As such, illegible also has to do with defaced printing. Something may have been made illegible because someone spilled coffee on it, maybe someone tore up the paper, maybe the ink has faded, etc. These are all examples of things that are illegible.

When to Use Unreadable

Best PTE classes unreadableWhat does unreadable mean? Unreadable is also an adjective. It describes writing that is of exceptionally poor quality that is too dull, obfuscatory, or nonsensical to read.

Here are some examples,

  • Roopa did not proofread her essay, and it is so full of grammar and spelling errors that it is unreadable.
  • “This sludge is unreadable,” said the editor, throwing the manuscript into the recycling bin.
  • Ravi cancelled his subscription to the newspaper, calling its reporting unreadable.
Trick to Remember the Difference

Best PTE classes Illegible unreadableIllegible and unreadable both describe undesirable types of writing, but they do so in different ways.

Unreadable refers to the content of writing—something that is unreadable might have many errors, be painfully boring, or not make sense. If you really wanted to read it, you could, but it is difficult.

Something that is illegible may be high quality content, but it still cannot be read—as mentioned above, the pages of a book may have faded, or someone may have spilled a drink on it.

Here is a helpful trick to remember unreadable vs. illegible. Since illegible and indecipherable are synonyms, and both begin with the letter I. You can use these two words to remember the correct usage for illegible.


Is it illegible or unreadable? Illegible and unreadable are two adjectives that describe the quality of writing.

  • Something that is illegible cannot be understood because the words and letters themselves cannot be deciphered.
  • Something that is unreadable suffers from poor content quality.

These words are somewhat counterintuitive. Since the definition of illegible seems like it would more literally apply to unreadable, many writers use them as synonyms. Still, the words mean different things, and for formal writing you will want to make sure you choose the correct one.

Illegible and indecipherable are synonyms that begin with the same letter, a useful mnemonic for remembering the definition of illegible.

Don’t sacrifice your credibility over poor word choice. Be sure to check this site any time you have questions about confusing words or other writing topics.

This daily series is an effort by Sahasriya in providing best PTE classes in Bangalore, Chennai and Coimbatore. These vital tips ensures your PTE classes in Coimbatore, Bangalore and Chennai is more effective with Sahasriya which is what hundreds of students benefit everyday.

About Sindhu Sriram

Sindhu SriramAn education enthusiast and a self-made entrepreneur in devising unique and simple ways to educate complex elements. An English language expert and a successful role-model for many aspiring trainers. Not only is she the brainchild to have founded Sahasriya, she is a top-notch and sought after English language professional

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