In Indian spelling, what is the correct suffix, -ize or -ise?

E.g. authorized or authorised?


Being a country which was ruled by the British, I think the suffix - ise was the one which was naturally used. More recent contacts with AmE may have influenced usage.

  • word-forming element used to make verbs, Middle English -isen, from Old French -iser, from Late Latin -izare, from Greek -izein, a verb-forming element denoting the doing of the noun or adjective to which it is attached.

  • English picked up the French form, but partially reverted to the correct Greek -z- spelling from late 16c. In Britain, despite the opposition to it (at least formerly) of OED, Encyclopaedia Britannica, the "Times of London," and Fowler, -ise remains dominant. Fowler thinks this is to avoid the difficulty of remembering the short list of common words not from Greek which must be spelled with an -s- (such as advertise, devise, surprise). (Etymonline)

According to the Oxford Dictionary (language matters):

  • Many verbs that end in -ize can also end in -ise: both endings are correct in British English, though you should stick to one or the other within a piece of writing. For example: finalize/finalise; organize/organise; realize/realise. This website spells these words with the -ize ending, but the main dictionary entries for the verbs show that the -ise spelling is also correct.

Authorize is the standard spelling in American and Canadian English. Authorise is standard in all main varieties of English outside North America.

I am from India and I suggest you to use -ise. The spellings in Indian English are greatly influenced by British English (thanks to their 4 century rule over India). So when in doubt, you can always go with the UK spelling. However, I also would like to point out that due to increased Americanization, US spellings are also becoming commonplace and acceptable.

  • -ize has always been fine in British English.
    – Angelos
    Jul 1 '16 at 17:07
  • 4 centuries? presence in india doesn't mean rule. their rule over the entirity of india as we know it (technically 2\3 as the remaining were vassal states) lasted for about 100 years and 50+ years for consolidating rule of bengal and madras into the empire it became. But yeah, ise or ize are both fine although ise is more commonly used.
    – arviman
    May 31 '19 at 12:46

For 'ize' and 'ise', the 'z' version is AmE.

To answer this question, it depends what do you practice. Indians practice both -BrE and AmE. But most of the Indian schools follow BrE and thus, if you pick any school text-book and check, you find 'ise'.

It's worth noting that British ruled the country for over 400 years. And, I think English was introduced by them. So, since then, Indians generally follow or practice BrE.

You can also check most of the newspapers including Times of India (one of the oldest newspapers in the nation). Example is this where you read the BrE version 'authorised'.

  • corpus.byu.edu/glowbe/?c=glowbe&q=43857802
    – user28567
    Dec 17 '15 at 9:01
  • InE is rooted in BrE. It is an all different story that in 1990s India became the hub of outsourcing IT projects and since most of the clients have been from the US, Indians started using AmE widely. As I said, today, you see both being practiced but if you talk about how it came, it's BrE. @snailboat
    – Maulik V
    Dec 17 '15 at 9:10
  • Hi, Maulik. Can I have your e-mail address?
    – user140086
    Feb 16 '16 at 14:31
  • As I have said before, -ize has always been permissible in BrE, and recently -ise has come into popularity.
    – Angelos
    Jul 1 '16 at 17:08

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