Is It *Jist or Gist? | Meaning, Spelling & Examples

Common Mistakes updated on  January 9, 2024 2 min read
Gist is a noun that typically means “most important idea” or “essence,” but it can also be used to refer to the grounds of a legal action. It’s almost always preceded by the definite article “the” (and can’t be used with the indefinite article “a”).

Jist is a misspelling of the word gist and should not be used. The QuillBot Grammar Checker will fix this and other common mistakes automatically.

Examples: Jist or gist in a sentence
I read the summary to get the jist of the novel's plot.
I read the summary to get the gist of the novel's plot.

Can you give me the jist of the presentation in a few sentences?
Can you give me the gist of the presentation in a few sentences?

Get the gist or jist?

Get the gist is a phrase used to express that someone understands the main idea of something, even when not all details have been mentioned. It’s often preceded by a pronoun to indicate whom the expression refers to (e.g., “he gets the gist”).

The expression is considered informal and should only be used in informal writing. It’s best to avoid it in academic writing or professional correspondence (where knowing the details of what you’re discussing is important!).

Get the jist is a common misspelling of the expression and should not be used.

Examples: Get the gist in a sentence
I haven’t heard the whole story, but I think I get the gist.
The instructions were unclear, but I managed to get the gist
Steve’s handwriting is so messy, but we managed to get the gist.

Do you want to know more about common mistakes, commonly confused words, rhetorical devices, or other language topics? Check out some of our other language articles full of examples and quizzes.

Common mistakes

Commonly confused words


Whoa or woah

Advisor vs adviser


Theirs or their's

Accept vs except


Ours or our's

Affect vs effect

Verbal irony

Forty or fourty

Among vs between


Sence or sense

Anymore vs any more


Frequently asked questions about jist or gist

What is a synonym for jist or gist?

Jist and gist are often confused, but the correct spelling is gist. Synonyms and near synonyms of this word include:

  • Essence
  • Main idea
  • Summary
  • Core
  • Thrust

Use the QuillBot paraphrasing tool to find more alternatives for gist.

Is it jist, gist, or gyst?

Jist and gist are two commonly used spellings, but the only correct spelling is gist. It means “main idea.” The other variant, gyst, is also wrong.

Use the QuillBot Grammar Checker to automatically fix your mistakes for free.


Julia Merkus

Julia has master's degrees in Linguistics and Language and speech pathology. Her expertise lies in grammar, language and speech disorders, foreign language learning, and child language acquisition.

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