Populace vs Populous

Some words not only have similar sounds but they also share the same root word, bringing more confusion to some people. This is the case with the terms populace and populous. Not only are they homophones, they also originate from the Latin word for people, causing some to misuse them or even interchange them at times. This post will help you differentiate between these two and help you incorporate them into your writing more accurately.

The word populace is commonly used as a noun referring to the common people” or “the people living in a particular country or area.”

Budget 2018: Budget targets larger populace, their well-being
Daily News & Analysis

“The infestation has turned the local populace into an array of deadly enemies …”
The Express

Far better to have a well-informed populace than to wave a big stick
Business Day

On the other hand, the term populous functions as an adjective meaning “having a large population,” “densely populated,” or “filled to capacity.”

Central Asia’s Most Populous Country Plans First Eurobond Sale

Yum China Sets a High Bar in the World’s Most Populous Country

Youth Homelessness Starts at Age 14 on Average on Hawaii’s Most Populous Island

Now that we have distinguished between populace and populous, you should be able to use them more easily in your sentences. Keep in mind that when using the word populace, you are referring to a particular group of people living in a particular area. Meanwhile, the term populous is used to describe a place with a dense or a large population or an area which has been occupied to its fulll capacity.