Cite vs Quote: Difference and Comparison

Being fluent and living a lifestyle where the English language is the way to communicate with other entities which belong to our life. There are many mistakes made in our whole mistake without knowing that it was a mistake.


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The problem of misusing the words is addressed here. The words do not even seem wrong, but there are misused in place of more appropriate words.

The meaning or reference will be the same, but the certainty and grammar rules determine what should be preferred.

Key Takeaways

  1. Citing is acknowledging the source of the information or idea, while quoting is repeating the author’s or speaker’s exact words.
  2. A citation supports or strengthens an argument or claim, while a quote provides evidence or emphasizes a point.
  3. A citation includes the author’s name, publication year, and page number(s), while a quote includes the exact words enclosed in quotation marks.

Cite vs Quote 

A cite refers to a source used to explain a particular person’s ideas and theories in our own words. It has the freedom of change as long as the meaning of the context is the same. A quote involves repeating the exact words of a speaker or an author without making any changes in our speech.

Cite vs Quote

Cite refers to another author, book, or passage for giving the reference to justify the content. Reference can also be used to prove the content by referencing the other citations. For example: “Authors who are highly regarded by their peers tended to be cited”.

The quote is phrases or lines from another author, or book stated as it is without changing a single word in the statements.

They are written in the “(double commas). The words are used using the same words in the same order in which the author said them in any context in which it is being used. 

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonCiteQuote
DefinitionReference is taken from another author or book.Certain context is used as proof in the content same as said.
FreedomThe freedom of change is given until the meaning of the context is the same.Changes are not allowed. The content has to be the same as the referenced content.
RepresentationNo different representation is requiredThe quote is represented in ““(double commas).
ApplicationCite is mainly used for reference and explanation.The quote is used as proof and evidence.
Reformation  As words of the reference can be changed sometimes the meaning of cite is also changed.As the words have to be the same as the quote, they can’t be manipulated.

What is Cite?

It is a kind of writing skill trick where the reference to another book, author or novel is used to justify the content of the piece of writing. It can also be used as evidence of your content by referencing the other material.

Thoughts of other personalities or the way of expressing that idea sometimes can be very useful for the person taking the reference from the written material.

The reference is also stated in the writer’s own words depicting the meaning of another author. The process of using a reference is known as a citation.

Reasons to use citation are to avoid plagiarism, ideas to be used from correct sources, gives the reader the authority to judge the relevance of cited examples from the context and helps the reader to know the value and performance of the written material.

For example, Authors who are highly regarded by their peers tend to be cited. 


What is Quote?

A quote is a statement or sentence said by someone else that can be used for reference in other content of the writing. The quote is used by the writers to reference others’ thoughts without changing a word in the statement. This process is known as a quotation in writing.

It is used to give the evidence to some context by stating the thing the same as it is. It is even quoted in double quotes so that it can be distinguished easily from other texts. The act of repeating the words said by someone else is known as quoting.

The quotation is a device that belongs to the literary category to represent someone else’s point of view.

It is used to increase the validity and originality of the context by providing proof of the quotes by famous researchers and influencers. It adds more value to the context.

It supports the text and makes the reader more believing in the text when they read the reference. It can also be used to the extent or carry on the next part of the research by using the quote until the last part of the work.

  • Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. -Steve Jobs

Main Differences Between Cite and Quote 

  1. The main difference between cite and quote is a citation or cite is the idea or thought of another individual or organization used as a reference, whereas quoted is lines or phrases that belong to other users as it is in the content for reference by defining the author who these lines or quotes belong to.
  2. The freedom to change the order and the words are given in the citation process, but the quotation does not.
  3. The citation does not require unique representation, whereas quotations require italics or a different font or double commas.
  4. Cite is mainly used for better expression and reference, whereas quote is used as proof on said stuff for reference.
  5. As words of the reference can be changed, sometimes the meaning of cite is also changed, whereas, in quotes, the words have to be the same for the quote, i.e. Can’t be manipulated.
Difference Between Cite and Quote

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