Just spent 20 minutes reading Wikipedia about the spelling reform movement. Apparently, a lot of people out there are advocating spelling reform — basically pointing out bologna doesn’t really spell baloney.
English really is a screwed up language, a fact that I’m learning more and more as my 6-year-old daughter asks me to spell words. (Yes, “new” does sound like “noo,” but we spell it “new.”)
Andrew Carnegie, believe it or not, was a big advocate of the spelling reform movement which made great strides in the second half of the 1800s.
Here are some successes that Noah Webster incorporated into his 19th-centure dictionary:
- musick became music (musick spelling is no longer in use today)
- publick became public (publick spelling is no longer in use today)
- cheque became check
- colour became color
- plough became plow
- favour became favor
But here are some that should have caught (cawt?) on, but didn’t:
- isle became ile
- examine became examin
- feather became fether
- definite became definit
- thread became thred
- thumb became thum
Thank you, Wikipedia!