We say “spelling error”, which seems to imply it would be “grammar error” since both spelling and grammar are nouns, whereas grammatical is an adjective, but I can’t help think “grammatical error” is what I would say, and feels more correct. But it bothers me that the two phrases don’t have the same grammatical structure.

Similarly, I don’t think I would ever say “typography error”, but instead “typographical error”.

There is, apparently, “orthographical” as an near-equivalent form for “spelling”.

  • ragan.com/Main/Articles/… Commented Jul 14, 2015 at 7:58
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    I'm afraid that if this inconsistency bothers you, you are fated to spend a lot of your life being bothered. Language is as it is, not as somebody thinks it ought to be.
    – Colin Fine
    Commented Jul 14, 2015 at 9:47
  • @ColinFine Oh certainly, and I do (by the English language, anyway). Working with much more consistent computer languages every day makes it worse. Commented Jul 14, 2015 at 15:55

1 Answer 1


"Grammar error" is a compound noun; "grammatical error" is a noun modified by an adjective. Both are in use, but the latter is preferred in material that can be searched online.

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