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September 3, 2015

8367999205_f43837be9c_zEnglish spelling is sometimes arbitrary and often difficult. Study our ABCs of commonly misspelled English words and their mnemonic devices to remember the correct spellings.

A: Accommodate. It’s large enough to accommodate two Cs and two Ms.

B: Believe. “I before E except after C” has some exceptions, but you better believe it’s true here!

C: Commitment. Commit yourself to remembering there’s only one double letter here.

D: Definitely. This word never drops the “e” in any tense.

E: Embarrass. You’ll never be embarrassed by this word if you remember that it carries two Rs and two Ss.

F: Foreign. Sometimes meaning “different,” remember that it’s different from most “I before E except after C” words.

G: Gauge. The “a” and the “u” are in alphabetical order.

H: Harass. If you can remember that the word is too short to harass you, you can remember to use the short spelling – that’s one R instead of two.

I: Its/It’s. Possessive forms in English vary based on the word. But contractions are always the same, so “it’s” always means “it is.”

J: Judgment. We won’t judge you for spelling it “judgement” as it’s considered correct in some cases, but the proper spelling excludes the “e.”

K: Knowledge. You know you’re at the ledge, so walk away, because you’ve got the right spelling.

L: License. “C” comes before “s” alphabetically and in this word.

M: Misspell. “Mis” + “spell” = the right spelling!

N: Neighbor. This is a tricky one that is best to outright memorize.

O: Occurrence. The “c” and the “r” both occur twice.

P: Pastime. There’s only one “s” here.

Q: Quizzes. You don’t want to have an extra quiz on commonly misspelled English words, but you do want to have an extra “z” in “quizzes”.

R: Receive. “I before E except after C.”

S: Separate. Separate the vowels here: Es outside, As inside.

T: There/their/they’re. Memorize the meanings of these commonly misspelled English words.

U: Until. Keep going until the first L, then stop!

V: Visible. No “A” visible in this word!

WXYZ: Weird. This is a weird exception to “I before E except after C.”

Photo Credit: Rebecca Boyd

 


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