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Using it in the example of:

Can you log despatch and delivery of documents?

Three questions:

  1. Is despatch a misspelling of dispatch that made its way into the dictionary? Could I use dispatch instead in the above example?
  2. Do you pronounce both of them the same?
  3. Are they a homophone of one another?
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closed as general reference by FumbleFingers, J.R., tchrist, Bill Franke, Mitch Mar 6 '13 at 18:15

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

2  
General Reference. They're just alternate spellings. –  FumbleFingers Mar 6 '13 at 3:15

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Is despatch a misspelling of dispatch that made its way into the dictionary? Could I use dispatch instead in the above example? "Dispatch" is the most common, and therefore most preferred, spelling, but both spellings appear side by side in the revered Oxford English Dictionary (see the work cited entry below). "Despatch" isn't a misspelling, just a less preferred spelling.

Do you pronounce both of them the same? These words are really two spellings of the same word; therefore, the two spellings share one pronunciation.

Are they a homophone of one another? The two spellings have the same pronunciations, but may not qualify as homophones because they are, in fact, the same word spelled two ways.

Work Cited

"dispatch | despatch, n.". OED Online. December 2012. Oxford University Press. 5 March 2013.

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