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The author of a book I'm working on insists that a ladle, a serving spoon for soup or stew, is spelled laddle. A quick Google search pulled results of ladle, but most shopping sites and Youtube videos have laddle.

I'm most certain ladle is correct. But I need to know how and where she got laddle.

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    If you are already certain that "ladle" is correct, then your title doesn't seem to match your question. / The spelling "laddle" suggests a pronunciation that rhymes with "addle" (with the vowel sound found in the word "trap") which is not usual: the word "ladle" is generally pronounced with the vowel sound found in the word "face".
    – herisson
    Nov 27, 2018 at 8:11
  • "But I need to know how and where she got laddle." Try to research and let us know what you found. Good Luck.
    – Kris
    Nov 27, 2018 at 9:22
  • I sincerely doubt that most shopping sites and YouTube videos have "laddle". How did you reach that conclusion? Jan 4, 2019 at 19:18

3 Answers 3

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​According to Oxford, Cambridge, Merriam-Webster's Dictionaries, there is the only spelling 'LADLE':

ladle
a very big spoon with a long handle and a deep cup-shaped part, used especially for serving soup.

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The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) shows 11 spellings of the word, over a period of 1000 years. Only one of them has 'dd' in it, and that is a Middle English spelling (from 1468) "laddil".

Kris has shown us a use of "laddle" from 1769, but that has not even made it into the OED. This suggests it is an isolated case - and evidently was not used in other editions.

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  • I have included a reference to "Wills and Inventories Illustrative of the History, Manners, Language, Statistics, &c. of the Northern Counties of England, from the Eleventh Century Downwards.," (emphasis mine) that has an entry related to the year 1569.
    – Kris
    Nov 27, 2018 at 9:21
  • This English-Tagalog Translator [tagalogtranslate.com/en_tl/4898/laddle] also lists sandok (the Filipino word for ladle) to laddle.
    – Almira
    Nov 28, 2018 at 10:46
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    @Almira: another isolated case, and (given the era) almost certainly simply an error.
    – Colin Fine
    Nov 28, 2018 at 14:44
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Historically, there are several instances of the word spelt with a double-d over a long period.

… the carpenter's man had a great iron laddle with which he used to supply the workmen with hot stuff, and as two of the enemies entered the boat where the fellow stood, he saluted them with a full laddle of the hot boiling liquor …
(Daniel Defoe, "The Life and Most Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe … The Ninth Edition.," A. Donaldson, 1769)

OTOH,

The Carpenter's Man had a great Iron Ladle, with …
(The Fourteenth Edition., J. Browne, 1779)

Note the change to single-d in the latter edition.

See also:

  • "Wills and Inventories Illustrative of the History, Manners, Language, Statistics, &c. of the Northern Counties of England, from the Eleventh Century Downwards.," Part I., London, p.307.(The quotation dates to 1569)
  • "251. To Make CREAM CURDS" in Elizabeth Moxon, English Housewifery Exemplified in Above Four Hundred and Fifty Receipts Giving Directions for Most Parts of Cookery, Library of Alexandria, 1755.
  • Andrew Duncan (Jr.), "The Edinburgh New Dispensatory …" Bell and Bradfute, 1819, xc.
  • Matthew Prior, "Poems Upon Several Occasions," Vol.1, Kincaid and Creech, 1773, p.128

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