I have seen this used on our marketing materials:

The technology imbedded in this solution will help improve productivity.

I was going to flag it as a spelling error, however Googling provided some references to it being a proper usage.

My instinct is that it is wrong however, can anyone shed any light?


Regarding Oxford Dictionaries, yes it is:


Pronunciation: /emˈbed/

(also imbed /im-/)

  • Does this say it is a valid spelling, or just a valid pronunciation? – leonigmig May 10 '12 at 12:22
  • @leonigmig I'm sorry, actually there must be a line break which makes is more clear. I added it, but following the link it is more obvious. The imbed does not refer to the pronunciation but to an alternative spelling for embed. – Em1 May 10 '12 at 12:31
  • @leonigmig: The notation implies both. Had it only been a variant pronunciation, it would read: "embed /emˈbed/ (also /im-/)". With both the variant spelling and pronunciation, it shows there's a variant spelling, and another pronunciation. See, e.g.: scallop (1 way to spell, 2 to pronounce); embed (2 ways to spell and pronounce); and judgement (2 ways to spell; 1 way to pronounce). – J.R. May 10 '12 at 19:28

This is general reference, provided you have access to a good dictionary. The problem is that the free online ones often aren’t very good.

These days, imbed is commonly perceived to be a misspelling of embed perpetrated by victims of the pin–pen merger.

However, the OED2 (1989) lists imbed as an alternate spelling of embed, while pointing out that embed is now the more common form.


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