Allude vs Elude – Pick The Correct Word

Some pairs of words can get confusing to use. The most confusing words are often the ones that are spelled somewhat similarly and also sound alike. An example of such is immigrate vs emigrate, which we’ve already tackled. Now, we’re going to take a look at allude vs elude and find out the trick to remember which is which. 


To allude is to refer to something without outright saying what that thing is. When you are alluding, you’re dropping hints about the object you are referring to or being vague about it. To further understand how and when to use this word, let’s take a look at some examples.


  • The vlogger alluded to the recent drama within the beauty community in her latest video.
  • In an interview, the movie star alluded to her rumored celebrity boyfriend but never directly confirmed anything.
  • When she asked how her grandfather was doing, he alluded to some health concerns but insisted that he was perfectly fine.
  • The letters I found in my grandmother’s old chest allude to the second world war. 
  • The politician was advised by his campaign manager to not allude to any controversial topic during his speech.


The verb elude means to escape something, or it could also mean failing to comprehend something. When turned into an adjective, elude becomes elusive, which refers to something difficult to capture.


  • The young thief was able to elude capture from the cops since he could squeeze his way through the crowd of people and narrow alleys. 
  • How those prisoners were able to escape that fortress under those extreme conditions still eludes experts to this day.
  • I always make it a point to come to work early so I can leave early and elude the rush hour traffic.
  • The famous musician was able to elude the crowds of fans by wearing a believable disguise. 
  • For years, Patricia was able to elude the more personal questions her friends asked about her relationship.

Allude vs Elude

Since both allude and elude have an air of secrecy behind them, it’s quite understandable to get these two words confused. The secrecy in allude has to do with being indirect and vague, while elude’s secrecy is in its ability to evade capture. Add the fact that the two sound similar, and you’ll find yourself accidentally interchanging the pair of words. But no worries. Here’s a little trick to help you avoid mixing up allude vs elude.

The A in allude stands for addressing indirectly. And the E in elude stands for escape from capture. 

Once you associate the word’s starting letter with what it means, then it’s much easier to keep in mind. And now that you know the trick, you’ll find yourself picking the correct word each time.