modern spelling

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modern spelling

Post by Archived Topic » Fri Dec 17, 2004 2:47 am

Is there a generally accepted date or time frame that what we consider correct spelling of English (or American) words came about? I've tried to research this, and have found details of several early dictionaries, one of which had the word "alphabeticall [sic]" in the title.

I know that language is constantly evolving, and we continue to debate proper spelling, but was there a definitive modern dictionary that we go by?

Thanks,
JF 12/15/2004
Submitted by Jeff Freeman (Orlando, FL - U.S.A.)
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modern spelling

Post by Archived Reply » Fri Dec 17, 2004 3:14 am

I don't know a lot about this, but I always thought, from an american point of view, it was Webster's tome that marked the day.
lneil
Reply from Louis Bussey (Boise - U.S.A.)
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modern spelling

Post by Archived Reply » Fri Dec 17, 2004 3:27 am

try getting your hands on a copy of Bill Bryson's 'Made in America' This doesn't really answer your question but it may be of interest
saus

Reply from Brian Hooper (Yeppoon - Australia)
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modern spelling

Post by Archived Reply » Fri Dec 17, 2004 3:41 am

The English Civil War of the 1640's was a considerable influence on prior (Tudor) spelling. In Elizabeth's reign, the concept of a 'regular' or correct way to spell a word was more or less meaningless. But from 1641, a vast outpour of War tracts commenced, and the editing of these printed items brought about the idea among editors and printers. There had been a few English dictionaries before this, such as Thomas Cooper's, but they were used primarily for definitions.
Reply from John Barton (New Plymouth - New Zealand)
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modern spelling

Post by Archived Reply » Fri Dec 17, 2004 3:54 am

John,

Thanks! That's exactly what I was looking for.

JF 12/17/2004
Reply from Jeff Freeman (Orlando, FL - U.S.A.)
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