Spelling rules?

Does any rule exist that would help me to determine when double letters are needed in a word? It seems I struggle with this more and more as I get older. I don’t rememeber it ever bing more than an occassional issue in the past.

In this sentence: take the second “e” out of “rememeber” and insert it in front of the “i” in “bing”. Discard one “s” from “occassional”.

More generally: I’m not aware of any handy rule that helps much. A doubled consonant often implies a syllable break - so if you don’t have one, maybe it should not be doubled.

A spell-checker can help.

Those were actually typos I didn’t see for some reason. I might just start typing my responses on e mail for the spell check and cut and paste. A lot safer.

What browser are you using that doesn’t have spell check?

I use both google and aol. Aol has spell check on my mail. I have never seen a spell check on google but haven’t looked for it either.

The sound of the preceding vowel is often a clue. For example “hopped” versus “hoped”; “balling” versus “baling”; “filling” versus “filing”.

In these and similar cases, the preceding vowel sounds like its name before a single consonant, but not before a double consonant.

Of course, you will find many cases where this rule does not apply, but it’s useful nonetheless.

English isn’t much for spelling rules. In general, doubled consonants in the middle of words indicate the letter is pronounced on both the end of one syllable and the beginning of another. e.g., “accident”. One hard C to end ac and one soft C to start ci. In practice though, that’s a fine distinction and people might not even be aware to that level how they are pronouncing words. There are also many words that have doubled letters and don’t follow this rule at all. E.g. all … and egg.

Adding an “-ed” or “-ing” to a verb that ends with a single consonant, you double the consonant if the word is just one syllable, or it’s two and the stress comes on the second syllable. So “beginning”, but “canceled”. However, Americans spell it “cancelled” about half the time, so they don’t always follow this rule, and the British always spell it “cancelled”, so it’s like they’re not even trying. Still, you will find the majority of words in American English, and only slightly fewer in British English, do conform.

This, but the key is the second vowel. It’s the presence of the second vowel that changes the short o in hop, to the long o in hope. If the first and second vowel are separated by one consonant, the presence of the second changes the first from short to long. If they are separated by two consonants (whether one letter doubled or two different letters), the second vowel is “out of range” and does not have that effect.

For the record, I am using Firefox 32.0.3 and it doesn’t do spellcheck.

I have a similar problem with double letters as I get older, especially when there are two pairs.

For example, accommodate, occurring, vacuum, and inappropriate all screw me up. (But there’s no pair of double letters in the last two, you point out… yeah, that’s because spell check fixed it, thanks.)

Sure it does. It underlines misspelled words with a squiggly red line. I’ve used Firefox for over 10 years, and it’s always done this.

You were asked what browser you are using. Neither Google nor AOL are browsers. Google is a search engine and AOL is an ISP. (AOL did, once, supply its subscribers with a proprietary browser, but I doubt whether it still does.) Browsers are such things as Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Opera … I think you will find that all those, all the widely used ones, have built in spellcheckers. They work as Leaffan describes. If you right click on the underlined word, alternative, correct spellings will be suggested.

Agreed. FF has had a long history of having a built-in spell checker, as does Chrome. Internet Explorer also does this in recent versions, IIRC - perhaps 10 and greater?

You can enable or disable the FF spell checker using these instructions (you might have accidentally disabled it): How do I use the Firefox spell checker? | Firefox Help

Incidentally, Chrome doesn’t like the word “spellchecker”. Is that legitimate, or am I just imagining it?

Years ago, I read about a way to remember how to spell “accommodate”: just remember that the room is big enough to accommodate two couples - the C’s and the M’s. This has stuck with me for at least 20 years, and been useful more than once. I tend to type out “occurring” at least twice, because the first time I get it wrong, squint it, decide it looks wrong, and try another combination.

If I log in here through Internet explorer instead of AOL, spell check does work. Nice to know. I just need to get into the habit of using IP more often.

Remmeber?? Hmmm that doesn’t look quite right either:rolleyes:

Remember is one of those words I will typo nearly every time. I have several words that I almost always typo on. Another funny thing that has cropped up in recent years is I will look at a word and it doesn’t look right, I recheck the spelling and it is fine but looks wrong. I will soon discover that the word next to it has a typo in it.

One word that always bothers me is “labelled”, or is it “labeled”? Some spell checkers like one, others like the other.

Spell checkers are not the final authority. Even dictionaries will differ. Speaking of which:

Refer -> reference.
Occur -> occurrence.
Abhor -> abhorrence.
Differ -> difference.

There is no consistency whatsoever.

Right-click any text editing field, like the ones you use to make posts here. A menu will come up with the phrase “Check spelling”. Make sure there’s a checkmark next to that phrase.

Right under it will be the word “Languages”. Make it highlighted by moving your mouse to it. A second menu will pop up out of it with languages (and varieties, because “United States” and “UK” and so on are all English, but all have subtly different spelling rules). Make sure one of those languages is selected by clicking an empty dot to make it full.

All this should be done by default, but if your installation appears to not have a spellchecker, apparently it wasn’t for some reason.

Good point - should have said “the ‘e’ before the ‘b’”.

Actually, there kind of is: