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Should I insist that Encyclopaedia has 'ae' not just an 'e' in it?

(28 Posts)
citizenGHOSTYvich Wed 12-Sep-07 22:36:08

As it is the end of term here DS's class were allowed to choose their own words to learn for their weekly spelling test.
True to form, DS has chosen words like "communicate" and "environment" and "expectation"
Although only in Year 2 he is up to it - I think ...
BUT 3 words came home in the list written wrong but marked correct by his teacher ...

The first two I corrected - but had to get the dictionary out to prove to DS that I was right and his teacher was wrong ..

BUT "encyclopedia"???

I am insisting "encyclopaedia" but am aware that it is sort of ok these days in an american and australian sort of way to just have an 'e' ...

What would you do?

JackieNo Wed 12-Sep-07 22:37:42

Teach him both?

Respect to him for choosing those words thoughgrin.

policywonk Wed 12-Sep-07 22:38:57

It's in my OED as 'encylopedia', with 'encyclopaedia'as a variant spelling.

Language evolves, and the harsh truth is that British English is gradually taking on aspects of US English.

Ellbell Wed 12-Sep-07 22:40:11

I think that the -ae- is tending to disappear from words these days. Very few people (if any) nowadays write 'mediaeval' rather than 'medieval', for instance. I would accept either spelling of encyclop[a]edia as correct. (And I am a mega-pedant grin)

ghosty Wed 12-Sep-07 22:41:09

Sorry, meant to change my name back <<throws off revolutionary garb and dons sensible tweeds and specs>> grin

I know Jackie ... he loves learning long spelling words ... he is pretty amazing with that really [bit proud emoticon]grin
We have to spend quite a lot of time making sure he actually knows what they mean lol smile

Quootiepie Wed 12-Sep-07 22:43:15

ae ae ae, it really bugs me spelt the lazy way. But the a and e are joined in a weird way, dunno why.

fingerwoman Wed 12-Sep-07 22:43:33

I would totally insist on encyclopaedia, unless you are in America?
though, do point out to ds that it is an accepted variation

and would totally be in having a word with mrs teacher about the others too- what's with that???

pointydog Wed 12-Sep-07 22:43:54

yes I thought both were acceptable

scienceteacher Wed 12-Sep-07 22:46:47

Personally, I would be happy with 'encyclopedia'. Whenever there is a discrepancy between American and British English, I am always happy to discuss and point out.

I noticed a couple of years ago that we were now to spell sulphur as sulfur. I can see reasons for it, and I don't let it faze me.

MarinaLaPasionaria Wed 12-Sep-07 22:49:45

Mega-pedant you may be Ellbell but I bet you still write mediaeval, encyclopaedia etc - I will admit that I do!

ghosty Wed 12-Sep-07 22:51:14

In my OED the word in encyclopaedia with encyclopedia as the variant ... but then my OED is nearly 20 years old blush
We are in Australia and the last time I looked the Aussies speak English English (although with a dodgy accent wink)
OK, I will stop being in a strop with the teacher and explain to DS about both versions.
To be fair to her, I think she is thrown by DS and his words (he gets to choose 2 of his own every week normally) so she didn't really check the others that well ... Have been there done that, teachers are human and do make mistakes sometimes - it doesn't happen very much.

MarinaLaPasionaria Wed 12-Sep-07 22:53:10

Ghosty, have you been infiltrated by degenerate bourgeois capitalist scum wink?

Ellbell Wed 12-Sep-07 23:17:21

MarinaLaP... I write 'encyclopaedia' (of course) but 'medieval'. Inconsistent too! blush I write 'medieval' so much that it would be hard to go against the majority on that one.

Does anyone have any strong feelings on -ise ersus -ize spellings of words like 'epitomise', 'characterise' and so on? I use the '-ise' version and thought that '-ize' was American. But more and more UK-based journals seem to be adopting the '-ize' version. Even the MHRA! (When the MHRA adopts the 'wrong' version it may be time to admit defeat!)

fingerwoman Wed 12-Sep-07 23:19:57

I always use -ise but in my OED it has -ize as standard for most things and says that -ise is a variant.
my OED is about 6 yrs old now, so not uber up to date either.
I was most shocked when dp pointed it out to me!

ghosty Thu 13-Sep-07 00:24:39

I can't stand -ize ... makes me grind my teeth [grr]
LOL marina ... should I put my tricolor back on do you think? Are we still revolting?

Ellbell Thu 13-Sep-07 01:04:55

I know ghosty. I have to write 'correctly' (i.e. using '-ise') and then waste a load of time doing 'find and replace' to change them all to '-ize'. Aaaargh!

Califrau Thu 13-Sep-07 01:10:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ghosty Thu 13-Sep-07 03:20:00

LOL Cali

I went to a presentation (to do with work) by an American visitor. His Powerpoint thing had clearly been done by an Aussie or NZ minion. When the word "Paediatricians" came up he did this brilliant double take at the screen and then apologised profusely to the audience. "I DO know how to spell Pediatrician - I am so sorry"
He saw the funny side later grin

lionheart Thu 13-Sep-07 22:23:32

Ise, it has to be ise. I get really bothered when proof-readers Americanize things.

newgirl Fri 14-Sep-07 13:16:02

collins and oed have both spellings so i would def not correct it although i would expect it to be consistent in a piece of work, for example

im a book editor (uk not american by the way) - i think ae is on the way out - it is a natural part of language evolution

Ellbell Fri 14-Sep-07 14:09:01

How do you feel about -ise versus -ize, newgirl?

(I'm an academic, but I do a lot of editing in the line of duty!)

NAB3 Fri 14-Sep-07 14:16:55

I would spell it correctly. I am assuming you live in England so why use an Amercian or Australian spelling?

Ellbell Fri 14-Sep-07 14:59:10

But the MHRA now prefers (i.e. insists on) -ize [irrationally angry], which suggests that it is now considered 'correct' on this side of the Atlantic too.


Ellbell Fri 14-Sep-07 14:59:38

Or were you still on encyclop[a]edia, NAB3?

NAB3 Fri 14-Sep-07 17:20:41


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