Are we spelling it "barbeque" now?

Well, except for the summer of '84. What a crazy time, but I’ve already said too much.

I consider “barbeque” as being in the same category as “Krispie Kreem” and “apple’s @ 0.35 c”. I’ll allow it if it’s in a trade name, but as a word in and of itself, I’m changing it to “barbecue.”

In ancient times, when getting food and drinks from the tavern, there would be two lines at the bar: One for the drinks, one for the hot food. These would be known as the Bar A queue, and the Bar B queue.


It’s an example of trade name that intentionally uses non-standard spellings (there’s an actual doughnut shop chain called Krispy Kreme. I have seen many Kwality Donuts as well). It’s a common phenomenon, also known as “sensational spelling” or “divergent spelling.”

Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Q8, Kleenex-Rite …

I believe he’s probably referring to “Krispy Kreme” donuts, and added a few extra touches.

Except barbeque is not a trade name it’s the accepted correct spelling in a large percentage of the English speaking world . Google fight shows 11.2 million results for barbecue and 3.3 million results for barbeque. USians do not own the English language and we will continue to happily have better barbeques than you on our sunny shores :slight_smile:

I like my cows roasted barbe à queue.

A misspelling has become an acceptable (to some) alternate spelling. How is that not language evolution?

Even the concept of misspellings is murky in English at least, we’ve never had any true standards body. The whole concept of dictionaries in the 19th century was pretty novel, because before that truly trying to standardize the way things were spelled just wasn’t done in English.

There’s a lot of important legal documents (for example, certain copies of the U.S. Constitution) from the colonial/American Revolution era in America that seem plagued with misspellings. (Or take a close look at the liberty bell and how Pennsylvania is spelled on it.) I don’t mean words spelled a certain way in 1780 versus how they are spelled in 2013, but rather you would see a word spelled one way in a lot of period documents then another way in another period document…misspelling, right? Not really, many words in English back then were just spelled “however”, and the concept of one of them being right or wrong wasn’t really a thing.

You can see that even with dictionaries we haven’t actually made much progress on the concept, as dictionaries even have to list multiple “accepted” or at least “noted” spellings of many words.

Other words that could be spruced up:


Or, just based on sensible back formations from their abbreviations:


Weird thing is, I wasn’t sure how I spelled it normally, so I looked through the archives to see my posts that use “barbecue” and “barbeque.” Looks like I spell it “barbecue” (182 posts), while “barbeque” only has 13 hits, and the four or five I checked were me quoting someone.

So I guess I’m a “barbecue” man.

I’ve always thought it was spelled barbeque. Then again, I am Canadian which may make a difference.

Do you live in Cuebec?

Nope. Look at my location.

Some data you might find interesting:
Google Ngram viewer
Google Trends

The Ngram view seems to indicate that barbeque has been stealing “market share” from barbecue since around 2000. Prior to that, barbeque had a presence but barbecue was still growing more quickly.

However, that data only goes to 2008. The Trends view has a more robust showing for barbeque, but barbecue has taken off since about 2009. I guess we hit pean barbeque in that year.

Well, that’s my que to move on to another thread.

Can I hear the seafood specials again?

Do you have a cite for this?

I suspect that the “barbeque” spelling derived from the “BBQ” (or “bar-b-q”) abbreviation of the word “barbecue.” All the sources I’ve found (admittedly limited to a quick google) say that “barbecue” is the original spelling. It’s also the spelling that makes more sense phonetically: as noted by others in this thread, if you sound it out phonetically, “barbeque” looks like it ought to be pronounced “bar-be-kweh” if it’s English, or “bar-beck” if it’s French. “Queue” is the only other word I can think of in which the letter combination “que” is pronounced “kyoo”; and it’s a word that’s more common in British than in American English.