This tag is for questions concerning the written representation of the English language, especially spelling and word breaks (including hyphenation).

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

2
votes
1answer
40 views

Was analysis spelt as anlysis in the past?

I found a lot of uses of the term anlysis, mostly in older texts and archived articles (from the 1970s). Was the word spelt as anlysis before the current use of analysis? Update: It seems like people ...
2
votes
1answer
29 views

How to spell [kæʃt] in the sense of “expended”

I have Googled but can't even find this word sense in online dictionaries. I've heard the word [kæʃt] used in the sense of "expended", such as in the following examples: My drink is [kæʃt]. (...
4
votes
0answers
51 views

What's the current scholarly opinion on the “minims” explanation for the spelling of “love”, “tongue,” etc?

According to the Online Etymology dictionary (as cited in this question How was the letter -u- written in Old English?): The substitution of Middle English -o- for Old English -u- before -m-, -n-...
2
votes
0answers
43 views

hiccough vs hiccup [duplicate]

I had 12 years of public school, 4 years of college (honors), 4 years of medical school and 3 years of post graduate training. Now I have practiced medicine for 35 years. Last week, someone told me ...
1
vote
1answer
22 views

Marshaller / Marshaler [duplicate]

What is the correct spelling of Marshalling/Marshaling? I also have problems with other derived variants of marshal: marshaller / marshaler marshalling / marshaling marshalled / marshaled Google ...
116
votes
8answers
27k views

Why is “Pokémon” written with an accent?

Is there a language-related reason why the word has an accent on the "é"? The Japanese for Pokémon is "ポケモン" (pokemon), so it's not to represent a long vowel.
7
votes
2answers
133 views

Professionally Indicate a Misspelling

I am writing a formal letter to a business colleague, and I know that I may have misspelled someone's first name. I do not have a way of checking if my assumed spelling is correct, but would like to ...
5
votes
1answer
101 views

What does “iages” refer to “gauges” or edges?

We're trying to determine whether "iages" was used to describe "gauges" or "edges". The usage was found in a document from the early 1630's drafted by an alderman attempting to settle a dispute ...
-2
votes
1answer
51 views

Why don't we simplify spelling of “champagne” to something like “champen” [closed]

In modern (or American) ENglish, we simplified spellings of many words, such as plough, mould, neighbour, and many many more. Why don't we do same thing for word "champagne"?
7
votes
1answer
143 views

What is the linguistic term used when a place is associated with building or historical figure(s)

What is the linguistic term used when a place is associated with a particular building or historical figure(s)? For example Westminster is associated with the Houses of Parliament and the Prime ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

Name for letter U in words like 'suede' and 'penguin'

What is the letter U called when it says the /w/ sound in words like suede and penguin? I've read that y and w are semivowels but the U in suede and penguin doesn't really conform to the definition of ...
1
vote
6answers
183 views

Is “risky” an acceptable spelling of “risqué”?

Is "risky" an acceptable spelling of "risqué" or "risque" (suggestive of sexual impropriety), such as in this article? Selena Gomez has posed braless in a risky and sultry new photo-shoot for ...
4
votes
4answers
597 views

What is the correct term for “2” vs “two”? [closed]

When written this way, "2", what is the correct term? When written this way, "two", what is the correct term?
2
votes
2answers
80 views

Is it “transferrer” or “transferer”?

According to thefreedictionary, "transferrer" is someone who transfers something. However, it also lists the alternate spelling "transferer", with only one r in the middle. For the related "...
3
votes
2answers
239 views

Why is “Thailand” spelled with an 'h'?

As we all know, "Thailand" is not pronounced with a /θ/ — so why is it spelled that way? Is the 'h' vestigial? Does it represent some subtle phoneme in the Thai language, and if so, what is that ...
1
vote
1answer
33 views

What is the error called when spaces are placed incorrectly?

He went home , but he forgot his phone .He returned to get it . ^ ^ ^ These are some examples, which nowadays get autocorrected by word ...
1
vote
1answer
71 views

Cipher vs Cypher - British English vs American English [duplicate]

As an English author but long time resident of America, I recently wrote a historical spy thriller that delved deeply into coded messages. I often caught myself writing cipher and cypher. Although I ...
1
vote
1answer
58 views

Is semiannual one or two words? Or both? Or hyphenated?

I've looked on Google and StackExchange for the answer and am having no luck. This HAS to have been answered and asked before now... so I'm sorry in advance if this is a bad question or a repeat.
1
vote
1answer
39 views

Is it acceptable to spell fantasy with PH instead of F? [closed]

I know it used to be spelled that way. I'm just wondering if it's still acceptable.
2
votes
1answer
92 views

When double “l” is considered American English?

I'm struggling with "enroll" and "enrollment". Both answers (this one and this one), given to this question, as well as Wikipedia seems to be suggesting, that double "l" is more common in British ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

Replacing proper noun “-y” suffix to match plural case [duplicate]

For a proper noun, in this case let's say Morty, would one replace the "-y" suffix when using the plural case with "-ies" or keep it as an unaltered "-ys"?
0
votes
0answers
22 views

Any research data on spelling mistakes in English?

I am developing a "did you mean?" suggestion for my project similar to Google's suggestion. To make the algorithm to work faster, I am looking for a data or any research done on English spelling ...
6
votes
1answer
117 views

Why isn't the ‘P’ in psychology pronounced? [duplicate]

Why is the initial letter of some of the words like pneumonia, and psychology not pronounced?
1
vote
1answer
53 views

“Wherever or Whenever”

Apologies for the title which sounds like the Shakira classic, but would you say "Thank you for providing help whenever possible" or "wherever possible"
0
votes
1answer
54 views

Different-colored or different colored? UK vs US English

Can I write "differently colored" instead? What expression most British or Americans would rather use? "socks, different in color" "socks of different colors" "a different color of each sock"
6
votes
3answers
432 views

Is it acceptable that I use ligatures and diæreses?

As we may all know, ligatures and diæreses have long become obsolescent. However, I see the logic behind spelling words with ligatures and diæreses. For example: algæ, formulæ, æon, æqulateral, ...
0
votes
2answers
110 views

Which spelling is correct: “Re-order” or “Reorder”

I'm looking to label an action button that would allow a user in a software interface to enable reordering (sorting, not re-purchasing) of items in a list. Re-order vs. Reorder When first presented ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

Are there any other words that are spelled with “a” but pronounced with /e/ like many, any?

Are there any other words that are spelled with "a" but pronounced with the standard phoneme /e/ in Received Pronunciation like many, any? Exceptions: derivatives of any (anything, anyone, anytime, ...
1
vote
0answers
34 views

Product description (text) in English, need some help [closed]

I have a product to launch, I've written a short description of about 600 words, I need some help to improve content quality, you know guys I am not very English :p I would like to make it more ...
2
votes
2answers
43 views

Indicating year when writing currency

Is there a convention for indicating the year of a monetary amount? Because of inflation citing a monetary sum is rather useless without specifying the year: $20 in 1900 is very different than $20 in ...
6
votes
2answers
89 views

Any idea about this 'ul' glyph from 1580's book on orthography?

Second row, all the way to the right. Does this glyph have a name? I am unfamiliar with it and had never come across it before. Page 21 in Bullokars Booke at large, for the amendment of orthographie ...
1
vote
1answer
96 views

Double Consonants in Gerund

Is there any rules regarding gerund that tell when to double the consonant of a word and when not to? I'm a little bit confused regarding this matter. Based on this link there are words that can be ...
0
votes
1answer
16 views

Hyphenation in pre[-]determined

Pre-determined or predetermined? I've seen both forms. Are both right, or only one of them? Is there any dialect difference between AE and BE? Do the same rules apply for all words starting with pre ...
0
votes
3answers
45 views

Plural of The Letter S

In a previous question here What is the proper way to write the plural of a single letter? (another apostrophe question) someone asked what the plural of a letter is. The answer given was for ...
0
votes
1answer
30 views

Spelling of numbers and particle “and”

I know that in order to spell a number you have to insert an "and" between the hundred and units. For instance 301 will be "three hundred and one". But what about larger numbers? 1,301 is "one ...
0
votes
0answers
22 views

When do you link composite words with dashes? (compounds)

In German (my mother tongue) it is very common to combine several nouns into a new word by linking them together with dashes. After a word has been established in German, you even see it getting ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

What do you call the phenomenon where you suddenly feel that a word's spelling is wrong?

First of all, does this actually happen to others? Hopefully it does. In my case at least, the most commonplace words suddenly seem to be spelled wrong. The most common examples are why, while, ...
-1
votes
1answer
67 views

Why are there silent letters? [duplicate]

Why do we put letters in some words which are silent in pronunciation? If they make no sound then why we waste space in words? For example: "Knife"; 'K' is silent "Doubt"; 'b' is silent etc.
1
vote
0answers
45 views

When writing in cursive, what is the proper way to write an acronym?

Would I just write the letters in cursive or switch to block text?
5
votes
1answer
164 views

Proper spelling of variant of “suspicious”

I'm not sure if it's an Aussie thing, but if something is suspicious, then it's sus(s), e.g: Someone added me on Facebook but they don't have a profile picture. I think they're a bit sus(s). The ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

“Neandertal”? Have English-speaking scientists now adopted the modern spelling?

In the 19th century the name of the valley in Germany was spelled "Neanderthal", and now it seems to be "Neandertal", with exactly the same pronunciation. But as far as I knew before tonight, the ...
0
votes
2answers
30 views

How to spell correctly: “neutral-stability curve” or “neutral stability curve”? [closed]

I have a question regarding spelling the following phrase: "neutral stability curve" in the meaning of "curve of neutral stability". Should I put a hyphen between "neutral" and "stability" or not? Is ...
2
votes
1answer
111 views

Why is “number” abbreviated as “No.”? [duplicate]

The spelling of number is number, but the abbreviation is No (№). There is no letter o in number, so where does this spelling come from?
0
votes
2answers
35 views

Communism/communism and Communist/communist [duplicate]

I have some doubts regarding capitalizing or not the following words: Communism Communist I know that Communism is generally written with capital letter, but sometimes I have this doubt and cannot ...
1
vote
1answer
73 views

Word for a word that changes spelling but not meaning?

What is the word that describes a word that has changed in spelling but not meaning, such as how the word "to-day" was once spelt "today"?
3
votes
1answer
94 views

What kind of spelling error is using “are” in the place of “our”?

It's using the homophone but is there a name for that kind of spelling error in Child Writing Acquisition? The whole phrase is: After that we Played with are inten do will". Of course there ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

What does “steenking” mean?

I read some source code and came across this sentence: Hopefully it works, and we don't need no steenking BIOS anyway [...] You see the word "steenking" in there. I traced its origin down to the ...
4
votes
2answers
131 views

Why is “batting” spelled with two t's, but “combating” spelled with one?

The "bating" in "combating" is pronounced the exact same way as "batting". It doesn't make sense to me.
2
votes
0answers
77 views

Usage of Robo vs Robot [closed]

In my job I'm researching about finance management and advisors. There is a class of software called "Robo Advisors". They are not Robot Advisors, but Robo. http://www.investopedia.com/terms/r/...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

Difference between “birth weight” and “birthweight”

Is there any US/UK English difference in the spellings "birth weight" and "birthweight"? In scientific journals, I have found usage of both spellings. E.g., Overall birth weight is not different for ...