Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Word of the Day: Orthography.

"When our spelling is perfect, it's invisible.
But when it's flawed, it prompts strong negative associations."

~Marilyn vos Savant

Photo found here.

From my Page-A-Day Calendar last Thursday:

\ȯr-ˈthä-grə-fē\ n *1: correct spelling
2: a way or style of spelling

*English orthography was not yet regularized in medieval times, so words often had many different spellngs.

Did You Know?
"It's a damn poor mind that can only think of one way to spell a word!" That quote, ascribed to Andrew Jackson, might have been the motto of early English spelling. The concept of orthography (a term that derives from the Greek words orthos, meaning "right or true," and graphein, "to write") was not something that really concerned people until the introduction of the printing press in England in the second half of the 15th century. From then on, English spelling became progressively more uniform and has remained fairly stable since the 1755 publication of Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language (with the notable exception of certain spelling reforms, such as changing "musick" to "music," that were championed by Noah Webster).

Who knew?! Poor spelling drives me crazy. It's rampant and I just don't get why people don't hire proof-readers. I'm not claiming to be a perfect speller, myself. People make mistakes, I understand that. But when you're printing something for a large audience or to market your product or to announce your wedding, don't forget that we live in the 21st century and we care about correct spelling. Please, please, please use spell-check and then, hire a proof-reader. Better yet? Hire me. :)

1 comment:

Lindsay RC Wilson said...

All I will say is---AMEN!