Tag: spelling

Video: ‘all right’ or ‘alright’?

Read more »
Copyediting your own work: 6 simple rules for success

Copyediting your own work: 6 simple rules for success

Whenever we write something – be it a novel, research report, formal letter, or email – there comes a point when we feel that we have included all of the information that we want. It can be very tempting, at this point, to press ‘send’ or submit the document. However, taking the time to copyedit […]

Read more »
james murray spelling

Did you know that James Murray… was for several years an advocate of spelling reform?

2015 marks the centenary of the death of James Murray, the first Editor of the Oxford English Dictionary. Murray’s work as a lexicographer is well known, but there was a great deal more to him than lexicography. We are therefore marking the anniversary with an occasional series of articles highlighting other aspects of his life […]

Read more »
drive thru

11 spelling changes that would make English easier

Editorial note: we are not advocating that you use these alternate spellings in formal settings; in fact, these spellings are best avoided unless your style guide prefers them. The English language is famous for its many quirks and exceptions to the rule, which can make it a difficult language to learn. One of the areas […]

Read more »
Hanukkah menora

How do you spell Chanukah? (Hanukkah? Hanukah? Chanukkah?)

Each winter, as the Jewish festival of lights approaches, English speakers grapple with the question of how to spell its name. The Oxford English Corpus records at least 13 different contemporary spellings, and there are even more in the historical evidence. While the vowels of the word (-a-u-a-) remain constant, there is wide variation in […]

Read more »
one_two_large

Two words or one?

Is there a space between a and lot, or is the spelling alot OK? What’s the difference between away and a way? If you’ve ever pondered over questions similar to these, the dilemma of ‘two words or one?’ is one which you’ll have grappled with when putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard. On […]

Read more »
Words that win spelling bees

Words that win spelling bees

So, you think you’re good at spelling do you? How would you fare with autochthonous, appoggiatura, Ursprache, serrefine, guerdon, Laodicean, stromuhr, cymotrichous, and guetapens? If you can successfully spell words like these, then maybe you should consider entering the annual Scripps Spelling Bee. From 27 to 29 May, 281 spellers from across the United States, […]

Read more »
q

Q tips: some rule-breaking words beginning with q

One of the first spelling rules that young children are taught is ‘i before e except after c’. Once they encounter words like neighbour, foreign, and weight, it soon becomes clear that there are exceptions. The same is also then true of another rule, namely ‘always use u after q’. There are at least a […]

Read more »

Tweets