OT: en orthography (was: en-GB-oxford)

John Cowan jcowan at reutershealth.com
Mon Jun 16 13:07:47 CEST 2003

Mark Crispin scripsit:

> How do they justify "centre"?

There is no need to justify it; it is obviously right on etymological
grounds.  The merger of -re with -er, like that of -our with -or, simply
reflects Webster's desire to make the spelling rules simpler by eliminating
a few distinctions that have no phonological consequences.  Given the
huge number of such distinctions still remaining in American English, of
which -able vs. -ible probably gives the most trouble, it is a question
why he bothered.

Axel Wijk rules; Noah Webster drools.

Knowledge studies others / Wisdom is self-known;      John Cowan
Muscle masters brothers / Self-mastery is bone;       jcowan at reutershealth.com
Content need never borrow / Ambition wanders blind;   www.ccil.org/~cowan
Vitality cleaves to the marrow / Leaving death behind.    --Tao 33 (Bynner)

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