Reply to comment about "Why Canadian spelling is different"


Please consult the “Comments and interaction” section on the Terms and conditions page before adding your comment. The Language Portal of Canada reviews comments before they’re posted. We reserve the right to edit, refuse or remove any question or comment that violates these commenting guidelines.

By submitting a comment, you permanently waive your moral rights, which means that you give the Government of Canada permission to use, reproduce, edit and share your comment royalty-free, in whole or in part, in any manner it chooses. You also confirm that nothing in your comment infringes third party rights (for example, the use of a text from a third party without his or her permission).

Submitted by joanneleclair on June 23, 2021, at 16:51

It is apparently true that early English printers had the habit of adding letters to some words. Here is what the English Spelling Society says in the article
“A Brief History of English Spelling”: “The printers also tended to lengthen words. This was driven partly by money – they were paid by the number of lines printed – and partly by page layout...” According to the Society, that explains why “frend” came to be spelled “friend” and “hed” became “head.” But my understanding is that words like “colour” and “honour” owe their “our” spelling to the influence of French, following the Norman Conquest of England. - The Our Languages blog team, on behalf of Sheila Ethier