When to put “i” before “e”

Most of us learned the spelling rule “i before e, except after c.” But handy though it may be, it doesn't cover all bases. In fact, there are many exceptions!

Take a look at a more complete version of the rule:

i before e,
except after c (receive);
or when sounded as ay (weigh);
or when sounded as eye (height);
or when ing is added to a verb ending in e (cueing)

i before e even after c
if the c makes a sh sound (glacier);
or if the word is a comparative or superlative (fancier)

Now that you know the rule and most of its exceptions, see if you can determine which word is spelled correctly in the questions below.


Date modified: 2019-09-26

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