Beside vs Besides

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By Archana Chaudhary

Beside vs Besides: In the English language, words that sound similar can often lead to confusion, especially when their meanings and usages are subtly different. “Beside” and “besides” are two such words that are commonly mixed up due to their similar sounds. However, they have distinct meanings and serve different purposes in a sentence. In this blog, we will explore the differences between “beside” and “besides” to help you use them correctly and effectively in your writing and conversations.

Beside vs Besides

Beside vs Besides
Beside vs Besides


  1. Definition: “Beside” is a preposition that indicates a physical location or position next to something or someone. It implies being in close proximity or immediately next to an object or person.
  2. Usage:
    • She sat beside me during the movie.
    • The cat sleeps beside the fireplace.
    • He parked his bicycle beside the tree.
  3. Common Phrases:
    • Beside the point: Irrelevant or not related to the matter being discussed.
    • Beside oneself with (emotion): Overwhelmed or consumed by a particular emotion.


  1. Definition: “Besides” can function as both a preposition and an adverb. It is used to introduce additional information, ideas, or reasons. It implies “in addition to” or “apart from.”
  2. Usage:
    • Besides English, she speaks three other languages.
    • I enjoy swimming, besides hiking and cycling.
    • Besides, it’s too late to change our plans now.
  3. Common Phrases:
    • Besides the point: Referring to something not relevant to the discussion.
    • Besides oneself with (emotion): Overwhelmed or consumed by a particular emotion, similar to “beside oneself.”

Key Differences

  1. Location vs. Addition: “Beside” primarily deals with physical location or position, indicating something is next to or alongside another object or person. On the other hand, “besides” introduces additional information or reasons, emphasizing inclusion or addition.
  2. Proximity vs. Supplement: “Beside” suggests closeness or proximity, both in the physical sense and in emotional expressions like “beside oneself.” “Besides” suggests inclusion, addition, or the presence of something beyond what has already been mentioned.
  3. Preposition vs. Preposition/Adverb: “Beside” is solely a preposition, while “besides” can function as both a preposition and an adverb.


Understanding the distinction between “beside” and “besides” is crucial for clear and effective communication in English. “Beside” is used to indicate physical proximity or position, while “besides” introduces additional information, reasons, or ideas. By using these words accurately, you can enhance your writing and speaking skills, ensuring that your messages are both grammatically correct and contextually precise.

So, the next time you’re deciding whether to sit “beside” or “besides” someone or when you want to mention something “besides” the main point, you’ll know exactly which word to use



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