A system for automatically proofreading a document for word use validation in a text processing system is provided by coupling a specialized dictionary of sets of homophones and confusable words to sets of di-gram and N-gram conditions whereby proper usage of the words can be statistically determined. A text document is reviewed word-by-word against a dictionary of homophones and confusable words. When a match occurs, the related list of syntactic rules is examined relative to the context of the subject homophone or confusable word. If the syntax in the immediate context of the homophone or confusable word conflicts with the prestored syntax rules, the homophone or confusable word is highlighted on the system display. The system then displays the definition of the highlighted word along with possible intended alternative forms and their respective definitions. The operator can examine the word used and the possible alternatives and make a determination as to whether an error has been made and if a correction of the text is required. If correction is required, the operator may cause the error word to be replaced by the desired word by positioning the display cursor under the desired word and depressing an appropriate key on the system keyboard.