Page 1 of 6 12345>Last »
Topic Options
#43004 - 08/26/04 09:56 AM Sit for a spell: English orthography
deborah Administrator
Chief Bibliofreak
Ching Shih


Registered: 05/27/00
Posts: 3901
Loc: Funkytown

Offline
We have a thread about "Spelling bugaboos," words we just can't seem to spell without difficulty, but I thought we could use a general thread about spelling. I kind of can't believe we don't have one...

Anyway, I got an e-mail from Amazon.co.uk about a new book called Accomodating Brocolli in the Cemetary [sic] by Vivian Cook.

 Quote:
Book Description
Weird or wierd?Minuscule or miniscule? English spelling is fiendish. Probably only one in a hundred people have truly mastered it. Yet when leading authers like Hemingway (mirricle, ungry), Erza Pound and even Dr Seuss get it wrong, how are the orthogarphically challenged to cope? Thankfully English lends itself to innovation. this book is a celebration of eccentric spelling. From hairdressers to poets, from texters to hip-hop fans, we love to play with words, as this gr8t book shows.

Synopsis
This delightful, quick-footed book celebrates the English language by exploring the rich treasure house of spelling in all its variety - setting tests and proposing rules, with illuminating quotations and tantalising lists Headrillaz and Misteeq; Naming Pop Groups; miniscule parallels; non-letters; the three-letter rule; Faeder ure pup e eart on heofunum; UK number plates; HipHop spelling; East Anglian place-names; the E-cancellation spelling test - these are just some of the intriguing subjects presented in this must-have, must-give little book.
I can't figure out if the typos in these blurbs are intentional. It's one thing to be clever in the title of the book but "authers" is pushing it, and "orthogarphically" doesn't make the point, it's just a typo. And there are other errors: lack of capitalization, spacing error, etc. Was this someone's idea of being clever? I don't think it worked.

Anyone know if this book is any good? It seems like a blatant attempt to ride on the coattails of Eats, Shoots & Leaves although that doesn't necessarily mean it's crap.

Top
#43005 - 08/30/04 10:47 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
FishDreamer Administrator
Ching Shih


Registered: 08/27/01
Posts: 2804
Loc: Windy City USA

Offline
"mirricle, ungry"? What in the world is that supposed to mean? Given the use of "gr8t" at the end of the first paragraph, I'm guessing this is an attempt to take us back to the days before any kind of standards for spelling were set.

No, I don't think it's at all clever either, I think it's appalling. I can't understand half of the description and synopsis, which does not incline me to check out the actual book. If it's intended to celebrate the glorious creativity in spelling, punctuation, and grammar enjoyed by the semi-illiterate out there, then I want no part.

Go ahead and call me a snob for preferring clarity in writing to gratuitous incomprehensible cleverness. That would be why I'm a tech writer, after all.

Is "Faeder ure pup e eart on heofunum" supposed to mean something?

Top
#43006 - 08/31/04 12:39 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
ainsley
Ching Shih


Registered: 02/26/02
Posts: 614
Loc: north carolina

Offline
 Quote:
Originally posted by FishDreamer:
Given the use of "gr8t" at the end of the first paragraph, I'm guessing this is an attempt to take us back to the days before any kind of standards for spelling were set....Go ahead and call me a snob for preferring clarity in writing to gratuitous incomprehensible cleverness.
I won't call you a snob because I agree with you completely.

What caught my attention most is that they used gr8t, and did so in a way that makes no sense. I'd be slightly less inclined to have disrespect for the book if they used gr8. That, at least, uses some form of logic.

I am a big supporter of having standard spellings, and I don't like the recent trend of tossing letters that people don't like in words. Drive-thru, I'm looking at you. I'll be driving through you, not and never thru you.

Top
#43007 - 08/31/04 12:52 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
carrotbat
Ching Shih


Registered: 06/01/03
Posts: 238

Offline
 Quote:
Given the use of "gr8t" at the end of the first paragraph, I'm guessing this is an attempt to take us back to the days before any kind of standards for spelling were set.
Either that or the writer of the blurb composed it on his/her cell phone ... phoning it in, as it were.

Okay, bad joke, I know.

Top
#43008 - 09/03/04 12:39 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
MamaAlanna
Ching Shih


Registered: 08/05/03
Posts: 262
Loc: Maryland

Offline
 Quote:
Originally posted by FishDreamer:

Is "Faeder ure pup e eart on heofunum" supposed to mean something?
I think it's Old English. I suspect that 'pup' is completely wrong, that what the original reviewer saw is an obsolete letter called 'thorn', which looks like a lower-case p overlaid with a lowercase b. It's the hard 'th' sound like 'that'. The 'd'in 'Faeder' should probably be an 'edh', another obsolete letter that looks like a d with the ascender curled over and a line through the ascender. It's the soft 'th' sound that you get in 'father'. Both have sadly been replaced by 'th'. 'heofunum' is 'heaven' and 'Faeder' is 'father': I'm going to guess that it translates to " Father Our that art in heaven".

That's not orthographic change-- that's language change!

Top
#43009 - 09/16/04 06:32 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
Ria
Ching Shih


Registered: 11/01/01
Posts: 497
Loc: Massachusetts, USA

Offline
The Guardian has a spelling test here . I got 18/23, which they said was good, but I feel disappointed in myself.
Top
#43010 - 09/16/04 07:20 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
deborah Administrator
Chief Bibliofreak
Ching Shih


Registered: 05/27/00
Posts: 3901
Loc: Funkytown

Offline
I got 23/23. Spelling is the one thing I can do.
Top
#43011 - 09/16/04 08:30 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
Klowey
Ching Shih


Registered: 04/06/03
Posts: 42
Loc: Ottawa, Ontario

Offline
I managed a 19/23. Which I think is pretty good, for me at least. I'm not an intuitive speller, I have had to work very hard to memorize the way words are supposed to look. (Which is one of the reasons that I had so much trouble in French class. Now there was another language to memorize things in.)

The fun bit is that with when it came to university and science courses (Zoo/Chem degree), the spelling was something I was used to dealing with and the longest, most complicated words didn't give me any trouble at all.

Top
#43012 - 09/17/04 06:35 PM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
Orlando
Ching Shih


Registered: 10/22/00
Posts: 335
Loc: Australia

Offline
21/23 here which surprised me - I found that really hard. I am an intuitive speller so I think if it was a straight spelling test it would have been easier. Giving me all those options made me second guess myself for just about every word.
Top
#43013 - 09/21/04 07:25 AM Re: Sit for a spell: English orthography
Angiv Moderator
Ching Shih


Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 1291
Loc: Scotland

Offline
Sarkycat had told me of this spelling a few years ago, but I hadn't really believed her until I spotted it for myself last week:

epitomy

Is this really an accepted spelling in the US, or did something nasty slip past every copy-editor and proof-reader?

Edited to add that I scored 19/23 too. I think I might have scored better without the multiple choice. I'm not good with decisions and I find no spelling looks right if I think about it too hard.

Top
Page 1 of 6 12345>Last »


Moderator:  Angiv, Catness 
Hop to: