Spelling in 21st Century
Chicago Tribune, McCormick, for the period 1934-1975
Many of us commonly use some reformed, phonetic spellings as expeditious and
find it is perfectly understood.
ad or advert for advertisement
nite for night
til for till and until
tho for though
thoro for thorough
thru for through
The Institute submits these as acceptable, if not preferred spellings,
for consideration as adoption as valid Basic spellings.
There use might denote a conversational usage at this time, but
these words are recognized by word processors where the writer can
be asked if they prefer to use the more traditional or more
Basic English is an auxiliary language and subset of standard English
in recognition of that language as the international language of
science and international commerce. Some extrapolate this to creation
of "the" international language. There are those that argue that
acceptance of English as a universal language requires spelling
reform in which spelling and pronunciation agree in a one for one
manner. I agree. However, Ogden wisely says these are two subjects,
that Basic is required as the auxiliary language must be totally
compatible with standard English, with selection process including
the most regular aspects for Basic usage. I agree. If both subjects
were introduced at one time, then resistance would be doubled -- the
writer in Basic would appear illiterate to the conventional English
user. Once Basic is accepted, then a worldwide claimer for spelling
reform can take effect. Therefore, let efforts at spelling reform
continue and become standardized in recommendation for acceptance
after the success of Basic in creating a worldwide audience.
In the meanwhile, as aspects of spelling reform gain recognition,
they can be welcomed into Basic. Also, spelling advocates
can select Basic words to try to build acceptable spelling.
1. Such words as rough (ruf) and tongue (tung) come immediately to
mind. Also cough (kof), rhyme (rim), thought (thot)
2. American English has become the international language in both
usage and electronic aids, therefore "colour" translates as "color"
and "plough" is updated to "plow". Also grey, humour, ?
Universal Language proponents also call for regularization of spelling
and pronunciation by introduction of new letters to the alphabet
so that most sounds have their own letter.
3. Any change in the alphabet will be accepted into Basic, but only at the same
time that it is accepted in Standard English.
Once any rationalization is accepted by the major dictionaries for
recognition as standard English, it can be welcomed as Basic. This
might be evolutionary or by world agreement.
apparatus and instrument, certainly one or both can be replaced by device.
through (thoro, thero)
Spelling reform started in the 1898 or before with tho, altho, thru,
thruout, thoro, thorofare and thoroly, catalog, decalog, and prolog.
These words are now acceptable, but not the preferred dictionary spelling.
The Chicago Tribune made an effort with selected words for over forty
years (1934-1975) in simplified spelling. Well received by readers,
it became Trib-speak, but did not achieve universal recognition.
frate, frater, glamor, harth, iland, jaz, tarif, trafic
In the last hundred years, spelling reform has been successful in
a few instances. These are now preferred form, not just acceptable from
the spelling of 100 years ago:
There are others, these were taken from examples.
Ogden looked forward to acceptance of : tho, thru, fixt, nite, anser, iland, wether
|interne || intern|
|prologue || prolog|
|publick || public|
Links for some spelling reform attempts by the
General History of Spelling Reform
including American Philological Association,
National Education Association, Chicago Tribute, and
U.S. Government Printing Office.
References : Organizations include:
Back to Basic English Institute.
About this Page: spelling.html - About Spelling Reform, incomplete draft.
Last updated January 21, 2007