What’s the Difference: Shade vs Shadow

Shade. Shadow. These words sometimes mean the same thing, and sometimes not. Oh, English! Why are you so difficult?

Shade is an outdoors area sheltered from the sun. A tree casts shade, as does a building. The inside of a building? That isn’t shade. This cat? He’s in the shade.

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There’s an English phrase that goes, ‘It’s 40 degrees in the shade!’ (It could be another number.) It means that the day is very hot. If it’s 40 degrees in the shade, imagine how hot it is in direct sunlight!

Did you like the picture of the cat in the shade? Okay! Here’s another.

shade vs shadow 1

You’ll see on this website that you can learn everything you need about English through cats.

So what’s a shadow? If there’s a light (could be a candle, a flashlight, the sun) and something blocks it – you get a shadow.


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Question – Does everyone have a shadow?

Answer – No.

Question – What? Of course everyone has a shadow. Don’t be ridiculous.

Answer – You need to read more books.


Question – You realise Peter Pan HAS a shadow? You can see it RIGHT THERE in the picture.

Answer – Fine, okay. He has a shadow. It just doesn’t go where it’s supposed to. Can we move on now?

Question – Just play the helpful video, will you?