Questions tagged [orthography]

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

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40 views

Why is there an extra “t” in Lemmatization?

When we say : Specify, it becomes Specification (no t) Value, it becomes Valuation (no t) Custom, it becomes Customization (no t) Lemma is a code used in programming, to describe the ...
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1answer
72 views

What is the plural form of musical score?

The title of a Spotify playlist from Disney is "Disney Score To Study To". The name surprised me because I would have thought it would be titled "Disney Scores To Study To". Seeing as this is an ...
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1answer
75 views

The spelling “ui” and the pronunciation /uː/ in juice, fruit, bruise, cruise, sluice, suit, nuisance, recruit, bruit

The words juice, fruit, bruise, cruise, sluice, suit, pursuit, suitcase, lawsuit, nuisance, recruit, bruit are spelled with ui and pronounced with the IPA phoneme /uː/. Full pronunciations from OED: ...
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2answers
48 views

spelling the word Resemblance with E

I came across 'resemblance' spelled as 'resemblence' in a set of Proficiency tests printed by Cambridge University Press. Since this spelling was kind of an eyesore, I looked it up and never found any ...
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0answers
116 views

How did “Papa” become “Pope”?

Pope, according to Etymonline is from: Old English papa (9c.), from Church Latin papa "bishop, pope" (in classical Latin, "tutor"), from Greek papas "patriarch, bishop," originally "father." ...
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34 views

Origin of “ight” [duplicate]

So many words end in "ight", such as "light", "might" and "sight". I am curious about this -- is there an etymological reason why "ight" is used for many seemingly disparate words? Thanks.
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2answers
315 views

NORMINAL — normal or with nominal mistake?

At the very end of the live-stream for the nominal SpaceX STP-2 mission, the presenter places what appears to be a baseball cap onto the table. It reads "NORMINAL" (sic). My first thought was how ...
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4answers
3k views

Spicket or spigot?

I recently was making a list and for the first time using a digital device, typed in what I grew up referring to an outdoor faucet 'spicket' as into my iPad. My mother grew up in Utah and my father ...
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1answer
41 views

How can enforce and reinforce have slightly different spelling and still be valid?

When I initially wrote inforce the dictionary told me that enforce was the correct word. However, when I wrote reenforce it told me that reinforce was the word I was looking for. So, I searched this ...
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1answer
143 views

Why is the Turkish president's surname is spelt in English as Erdogan, with g?

I recently got puzzled as to why American journalists spell the surname of the current Turkish president in articles written in English as Erdogan, with g (see, e.g., this article in New York Times). ...
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27 views

Is it ok to have a semicolon after a colon or em dash? (or other variations)

I've looked all over but have not found this example. Can one use a semicolon after a colon or em-dash (or similar doubling up combinations). Is it a matter of style or is there a fast rule? e.g.: ...
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1answer
73 views

Historical abbreviation of 'multiplied'

I was reading Bayes' essay "An Essay towards Solving a Problem in the Doctrine of Chances" and noticed the following bit of notation The meaning of the n+1 term is clear from the rest of the essay (...
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0answers
40 views

Tying. Is Tieing really that unusual?

When tieing two things together, e.g: Two distinct ideas, but with a common theme tieing them together Tieing shoe laces is easy. I have always spelt it with an ie. Now I am being told by ...
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0answers
26 views

Pre-requisite vs prerequisite

Looking up this on English exchange I couldn't seem to find a single source of truth: Instance 1 - "Prerequisite" in search: "Prerequisite for" vs. "prerequisite to" Instance 2 - ...
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0answers
37 views

First use of capital letters [closed]

The first latin script which consisted of both majuscule and minuscule letters (lowercase and uppercase, or small and capital letters) is Carolingian minuscule. It is a fact. But what is unknown to me ...
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17 views

is it okay to start a paragraph with Due to? [duplicate]

Due to the severe foot injury, I was recommended to stay on bed rest for three months and also attend physical therapy to heal completely
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4answers
47 views

Prime-square or prime-squared? [closed]

I am not so sure which one is the correct spelling. When we try to say a square/cube of a prime, we should call it a "prime-squared/cubed" or a "prime-square/cube" number? It sounds to me that "...
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1answer
34 views

I am trying to find out if there is a convention of correctness for writing Arabic proper nouns starting with 'Al'

The news channel 'Al Jazeera' writes its name like I have i.e with a space between 'Al' and 'Jazeera', in text but in the logo it is 'ALJAZEERA'. One come across variations like 'Alqaeda', 'Al-Qaeda', ...
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0answers
43 views

Spelling changes

There was a word I learned to spell when I was 11 in which there was a silent G. It is no longer used. Right now I cannot remember the word, but I am interested in finding out how to locate U.S. ...
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1answer
2k views

The meaning of the Middle English word “king” [closed]

Why was the word (?verb?) "king" used in this (page 63) Mk.2:6 part of the Wycliffe Bible? The King James Version Mk.2:6 But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their ...
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37 views

The name of the letter, which is related to two English letters “gh” [duplicate]

What is the name of the marked letter, which in my opinion relates to the two modern English letters "gh"?
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1answer
88 views

The etymology and the Middle English spelling of “beginning” [closed]

This question is about historical spelling, but in my opinion the knowledge of the historical spelling relates with the etymology knowledge. The questions are: 1. Is the fourth letter in image 1 (y) ...
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2answers
166 views

What is the use of the double L in Llama and double A in Aardvark? [duplicate]

Always wanted a clear explanation as to why these animals had double letters at the beginning of the spelling. What’s up with that?
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1answer
59 views

“Sic on” or “Sick on”? [closed]

What is the actual spelling of "sic"/"sick" in a phrase like "I will sic my dog on you"? This is a tricky one to look up in an online dictionary, every match seems to be referring to an editor's mark ...
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2answers
58 views

Is it deodoriser/deodorizer/deodouriser/deodourizer? In British English as well as American [closed]

British English would usually use "-our" and "-ser" and American English would use "-or" and "-zer". I don't seem to find an appropriate answer to this. Which combination is actually correct for ...
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2answers
41 views

Should it be “doxxed/doxxing” or “doxed/doxing”?

The Oxford Style Guide says, for example, that: When the final consonant is w, x, or y this is not doubled: tow, towing, towed vex, vexing, vexed However, it seems that doxxed/doxxing ...
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2answers
53 views

Is it Decryptor or Decrypter? [duplicate]

I'm coding a decryption service and wondering which is the best name, Decryptor or Decrypter I had a quick look online and it appears -er and -or convert a verb to an agent noun, however is one ...
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2answers
56 views

Verb for action; “Actioning”

I am currently writing an email to office management. I am asking for office management to action a fix. I want to ask them in a polite manner. The sentence I have: "Please consider actioning a fix."...
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2answers
74 views

Different etymologies for spoken and written forms

I know a word in another language which appears at first to have a highly irregular spelling that does not match the pronunciation. However, further examination suggests that the spoken and written ...
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1answer
47 views

What's the word after Gucci and Hermes?

Here is the link of the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9Y5i77gpwY And in about 0:07, there is an expression Rocking the next Gucci ? or Hermes ? and I can't figure out what words should ...
4
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1answer
100 views

Shouldn't we spell “extrovert” as “extravert”? [closed]

I saw the spelling extrovert in a text, but I intuitively felt that the correct spelling is extravert. I did a little research and read that extravert is commonly used in scientific/technical ...
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1answer
76 views

Why father’s first letter is capital [duplicate]

After they had their supper, Father went into the living-room to watch TV. Why use Father not father?
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1answer
163 views

spatio or spatial

Searching the Google scholar, "spatio-temporal" returnn 778,000 hits, "spatial-temporal" returns 798,000 hits, "spatial-temporal scales" returns 3,620 hits, "spatio-temporal scales" returns 13,...
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2answers
479 views

Cedent or Cedant

In insurance it is very common to refer to a company who cedes some risk, but the spelling is inconsistent. Sometimes it is spelt "cedent" and sometimes it is spelt "cedant". Which is more correct? ...
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2answers
463 views

What did Colbert mean by “bedude form"?

In his most recent monologue on The Late Show, the comedian host Stephen Colbert, gently mocked a New York Times reporter's style of writing (watch the excerpt on YouTube) “500 words” she whispered,...
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1answer
86 views

Orthograpy of /æ/ in unstressed syllables

Some words like: magnificent /mæɡˈnɪfəsənt/, anesthesia /ˌæn.əs.ˈθi.ʒə/, acrobat /ˈæk.ɹo.bæt/ accidentally /ˌæksəˈdɛnt(ə)li/, aluminium /ˌæl(j)uˈmɪn.j.əm/, satisfaction /sætɪsˈfækʃən/ have an ...
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3answers
92 views

Which is the preferred spelling, “byproduct,” “by-product,” or “by product?”

I've seen the word "byproduct" written several different ways and I'm wondering which is the preferred format? Is this a variation between US and British English or just a matter of a "house style?"
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1answer
59 views

Correct wording/spelling for our company's new slogan [closed]

I work for a small company (located in Italy) which makes websites and sells/repairs computers. Right now we are in the process of creating a new logo and updating our slogan / corporate design. My ...
4
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1answer
704 views

Why do we liquefy when we also solidify (but not soledefy)?

I always misspell liquefy and it drives me nuts. Solids will (or, I suppose, have) solidify but liquids apparently miss out on the chance to liquidify. Instead they have to liquefy I'm sure this is ...
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1answer
183 views

Why is “make do” considered correct

Why is "make do" considered correct? I am specifically not asking why "make due" grinds people's gears, how distressing they find it, or what they feel "make do" would mean. Lacking an etymology, ...
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1answer
248 views

Full-stack vs Full Stack, Back-end vs Back end, Front-end vs Front end

Software Developers use the dash interchangeably for these terms. Front-end meaning one works on the "Front End" of an application (e.g. HTML), Back-end meaning one works on the "Back End" of an ...
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0answers
8 views

friend of the familyname's or familynames [duplicate]

Is it "John is a friend of the Smith's." or "John is a friend of the Smiths." ? Thank you for your answer :)
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4answers
4k views

Why do we spell the word “who” with a silent “w” when it isn’t needed?

If we spelled who without the W – making it ho like with do and to — it could still make sense, so why is there a silent W in the word who?
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1answer
43 views

Co-pay vs copartnership: Prefix hyphenation in AmE

In AmE, we tend to close up prefixes like co-, re-, pre-, post-, etc. unless the first letter of the main word is the same vowel as the last letter of the prefix. But I see some exceptions like ...
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0answers
158 views

“miss assessed” “miss-assessed” or “misassessed”?

I googled this, and I am getting ambiguous results. In books, even in legal documents, I can find examples of "misassess", "miss assess" and "miss-assess". What is the correct way to spell this verb? ...
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1answer
165 views

'Histogramed' or 'histogrammed'?

The following rule (or 'rule', this being English) is sometimes quoted: If a word has two or more syllables, double the final consonant when adding a suffix if and only if the final syllable is ...
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2answers
279 views

Is “commerical” a valid and different word from “commercial”? [closed]

Googling, I see many places using the spelling commerical, but I don't see that spelling in any dictionaries at all. Is it a mistake for commercial, or are these two different words?
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1answer
152 views

“25th De­cem­ber” vs “25 De­cem­ber”: Should I use or­di­nals or car­di­nals for the day of the month?

In one of the IELTS lis­ten­ing tests, there is a fill-out-the-blank ques­tion read­ing: The mu­seum is not open on ___. My an­swer was “25th De­cem­ber”. How­ever, the of­fi­cial an­swer is “25 ...
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1answer
51 views

Is the edh ð always curved, or can it be straight?

I'm wondering about the orthography of the old english edh ð. It is always drawn (lowercase) as a curved d with the line through it. But I'm wondering if it would be acceptable to just have it be a ...
3
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1answer
73 views

How homogeneous was Old English spelling?

Are varying spellings available, or was Old English rather uniform, as far as the sources show? Variant spelling may have indicated different verbal dialects, but written dialects, involuntary eye ...