[Home]AmericanSpelling

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The letter u is an abomination, and must be removed!
The letter z is under-represented!  Fair rights for all letters!  (Except the aforementioned letter u)

Lightweight metal?  We don't need no steenking ini's in our um's.  (Does that explain the registry?)
There's an argument that Aluminum is correct by means of being the earlier name for the element, anyway... -- Senji
The original Celsius scale had the boiling point of water at 0 and the freezing point at 100. Being the earlier name does not make it correct. --SF


American spelling was deliberately revised by Noah Webster, who wrote the first American Dictionary, published in 1828, and its ancestor, the American Spelling Book, published 1783-1801.  Webster was in favour of an American system of spelling for several reasons.  One was that as a rational thinker, he preferred a simpler spelling system (so, for example, favoured 'tung' over 'tongue' - which didn't catch on).  He thought that the simpler system would be easier to teach (debatable).  Mostly, though, he wanted differentiation from the English for reasons of national identity, and those are the arguments he used to get his dictionary adopted by schools, and by government.
Am I the only one who would pronounce "tung" marginally differently from "tongue"? -ChrisHowlett
No, but I think we're back to that conversation about the unpronouncable word for the phone that is used in english when the speaker is too lazy to pronounce a vowel.  --Vitenka
Yes, I have a slightly longer "ng" noise, and an implicated end-vowel in my "tongue" --CH, deliberately using the personal possesive for comic effect.
Some (silly) people pronounce it "tong" anyway... -- Senji

I'd heard this too - is it really true, or UrbanLegend?  I know that English spelling and grammar was only really formalised in the late SeventeenthCentury, so it seems plausible that different decisions were taken in different parts of the world.  --Vitenka
According to a university class I took on the evolution of the English (or American, as the case may be) language, yes, American spelling revisions are attributable to Webster.  The teacher, though, didn't go into his motivations for streamlining spelling. --Nataku
It'd make automatic speech-to-text a *lot* easier if he'd gone a bit further and standardised phonemes completely. Eet'd maeek speech rehcogneeshn a lot eezeeehr eef hee'd gan ehi beet fyorthehr.. or something ^^; We should all switch to kana. - MoonShadow



CategoryLanguage, Spelling; see also American

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