[Journal of the Simplified Spelling Society, J24, 1998-2, pp18-22]
[See Journal and Newsletter articles, Pamflet 15, Cut Spelling and Papers by Chris Upward.]

Overcomng Orthografic Frontirs, Part I.

Christopher Upward

Th secnd part of this articl is pland for publication in JSSS J25 1999/1.
Both parts ar ritn in Cut Spelng.

0. Abstract.

As th European Union expands, so do its problms of languaj manajmnt. Many se a solution in english as a natrl lingua franca, but its caotic orthografy is a major obstacl. This paper sujests that comunication between european languajs is made unecesrily dificlt because ther ritn forms hav not been co-ordnated since roman times. English, notebly, represents an unregulated mishmash of orthografic traditions, wich, if co-ordnated, cud make it a mor efectiv lingua franca.

Th articl then anlyzes Cut Spelng (CS) for its compatbility with othr languajs. CS, wich simplifys traditionl orthografy (TO) chiefly by omitng redundnt letrs, has thre cutng rules, each adresng a particulr spelng problm: Rule 1 omits letrs irelevnt to pronunciation, Rule 2 omits vowl letrs from sufixs, and Rule 3 simplifys dubld consnnts. Rule 1 is shown to asimlate numerus individul words (and som jenrl spelng patrns) to cognate forms in al th main west european languajs. Part I ends here.

In Part II (to apear in th next issu of JSSS), Rule 2 wil be shown mainly to brij som importnt difrnces between french and jermn, wile Rule 3 introduces a major advantaj of iberian orthografy to english. CS also substitutes F for PH, so alyning english with danish, duch, italian, norwejan, portugese, spanish, swedish, and, for certn words only, french and jermn.

Finaly, th paper considrs th implications of th abov concept for intrlingul spelng co-ordnation and speculates on posbilitis for its realization.

1. Th Babel syndrome.

Mostly we take it for grantd that th human race comunicates via numerus mutuly incomprehensbl languajs, and that comunication between peple of difrnt mothr tongs is dificlt, requiring years to be spent lernng foren languajs and much efrt and patience in using them. Unless we ar advocats of an artificial universl languaj, it dos not normly ocur to us to think that this division between languajs myt be undesirebl, or that it myt even be posbl to overcom it. On th contry, linguistic/cultrl diversity is comnly seen in positiv terms, and one may indeed wondr wethr, if th hole world wer restrictd to a singl languaj, humanity's colectiv potential for creativ, inovativ thinkng myt not sufr. Lexicl borroing between languajs testifys to a need to expand our invntry of concepts by means of terms lakng in our mothr tong, and, so one myt argu, if th human race only had one mothr tong, we cud not so redily expand our conceptul universe.

Nevrthless, th mutul incomprehension and at worst even violent conflict that result from th multiplicity of th worlds languajs ar also self-evidntly serius problms, and a variety of aproachs to overcomng th barirs they represent has been seen thruout histry. An erly expression of th idea of a singl languaj uniting th human race is seen in th biblicl Babel story (Jenesis, Chaptrs 10 & 11). It tels (11:1) how "th hole erth was of one languaj and of one speech", but peples ambition to bild (11:4) in Babel (=Babylon) "a city and a towr, hos top may reach unto hevn" ofendd th Lord of that exaltd domain. He determnd to thwart wat he regardd as th overweenng ambition of th "children of men", and went down to (11:7) "confound ther languaj, that they may not undrstand one anothrs speech". And so a paradise of linguistic unanimity was lost. This vision of an erstwile singl languaj, howevr, relates to a mythicl past, and dos not sujest th posbility that ther cud again be such a singl languaj in th futur.

Tho a litrl meanng for biblicl acounts of th orijn and developmnt of humanity is now jenrly discountd, belevers somtimes try to explain them as embodying a symbolic or metaforicl truth. And indeed ther is at least a paralel between th Babel story and th findng by Joseph Greenberg (Stanford) of comn lexicl elemnts in jeograficly widely dispersd aborijnl languajs thru Africa and America, wich imply primeval linguistic 'superfamlis' [1] (Darwin anticipated th idea of a diversification of languajs in Chaptr 13 of The Origin of Species). [2] Certnly, if th theory of a singl africn ancestr for al human races is valid (th 'out of Africa' or 'africn Eve' theory), ther must lojicly also be th posbility of a singl sorce for al human languajs. Alternativly, discrete languajs may hav arisn in difrnt comunitis aftr th first diaspora from Africa. But th 'out of Africa' theory is itself not uncontestd eithr. [3]

As long as human comunitis wer sparsly scatrd around th globe, th problm of comunicating between speakrs of difrnt languajs was a local afair. But wen riting was developd in South West Asia (centrd on modrn Iraq) over 5,000 years ago, and expansionist empires with difrnt languajs and riting systms clashd in th rejon, local interpretation between languajs no longr suficed: th need arose for forml ritn translation, for instnce to record treatis between such powrs. One solution to th problm of mutuly incomprehensbl languajs is thus by th endless, painstaking, time-consuming, labor-intensiv and trechrus ('traddutore traditore') task of translation.

Anothr solution is thru th use of a comn languaj, in othr words via a lingua franca. Th past 2,000 years in Europ hav seen periods of domnnce of a lingua franca facilitating intrnationl comunication, but intrspersd with a resurjnce of vernaculrs. From roman times until th last few centuris th problm of multipl languajs was mitigated thru th predomnnce of latn, wich enabled th Roman Church in particulr to oprate as a supra-nationl orgnization thru a comn languaj. In th politicl sfere ther was somtimes a gretr need for comunication beween individul nationl languajs, an erly instnce being th Strasburg Oaths of 842 between th eastrn (proto-jermn) and th westrn (proto-french) part of Charlemagnes formr empire, with th text translated into both erly french and erly jermn. In th mor recent centuris of french domnnce of contnentl Europ (from around th 16th to th late 19th century) french cud serv as a lingua franca for many purposes, such as diplomacy, and it was for instnce spoken at certn periods at both th prussian and russian corts.

Th rise of nationlism in th 19th century and th emerjnce most notebly in eastrn Europ aftr 1918 of new nation states proud of ther own languajs tendd to undrmine th domnnce of any one lingua franca, tho jermn was widely undrstood in centrl and eastrn Europ. Th supra-nationl orgnizations of th secnd half of th 20th century, such as th United Nations and th European Comunity (today European Union), alow for a ranje of oficial languajs to be used, partly to prevent domnation by any one linguistic cultur. Indeed it is today a widely aknolejd democratic principl that al peple shud hav th ryt to express themselvs in ther mothr tong, and democratic societis may sho respect for minority languajs by subsidizing ther use. On th othr hand, th worldwide British Empire from th late 19th to th mid-20th century, and then th rise of th United States as a superpowr, hav combined to giv english th status of a de facto lingua franca in many parts of th world, altho som cuntris hav tryd to resist its spred (ostensbly to protect ther nativ languaj from an influx of anglo-americn vocablry and hence cultrl norms; howevr, so th presnt authr wud argu, a mor serius reasn for resistng th spred of english wud be to prevent th undrmining of nativ orthografis by th execrbl spelng practises of english). Meanwile, thruout th centuris, and abov al in th 20th century, ther has been a stedy extension of intrnationl comunication in many difrnt sferes, comercial, tecnicl/sientific, militry, politicl and cultrl, and with it an evr-incresing need to facilitate dialog, ritn and spoken, between speakrs and riters of difrnt languajs.

In jenrl, one may caractrise th abov responses to th Babel syndrome as eithr non-intrventionist (eg, alowng linguae francae to emerj as they wil) or ad hoc (eg, translating and interpretng wher necesry), altho, as we alredy noted, objections can be made to both procedurs. Varius means hav been proposed to reduce th barirs wich th Babel of difrnt languajs presents and wich impede intrlingul dialog. One aproach has been th creation of artificial languajs. Erly experimnts in th 17th century esentialy involvd redesignating concepts independntly of natrl languajs and therby, it was intendd, givng them som kind of universl, objectiv status; th prime aim of those systms was thus typicly to aid clear thinkng rathr than intrlingul comunication. It was from th late 19th century that th devising of artifical languajs for th latr purpos came into its own, with a numbr of systms quite wel nown today. For exampl Esperanto, Glosa and Interlingua recently al made presntations to th EU to try and demnstrate ther potential in a multilingual orgnization, th complexity of hos translation and interpretng services thretns to becom unmanajbl as new nations with ther own languajs join th EU in years to com. Th European Comissions Berlaymont bildng in Brusls has, not surprisingly, befor now been likend to th towr of Babel.

2. Th orthografic aspect.

Th Babel syndrome [4] has many dimensions, of wich we hav so far only considrd th most jenrl: th dificlty of comunication between difrnt languajs. Othr, mor specific dimensions concern speakng and riting, lernng as wel as mature use, co-ordnating termnolojy between languajs, and using dictionris. This articl aims to discuss th orthografic dimension of th problm, wich, altho limitd in itself, tuchs on al th abov dimensions. How words ar ritn also has implications for how they ar pronounced - and, if not spelt by th alfabetic principl of predictbl sound-symbl corespondnce, may trap th unwary into mispronunciation. How languajs ar ritn can help or hindr th lernng process, and make it esy or dificlt to produce ther ritn forms acuratly. Tecnicl terms may vary ther spelngs in sutly unpredictbl ways from one languaj to anothr. Dictionris may need to giv mor, or less, infrmation about pronunciation and about spelng variations between words, for instnce wen listng inflections.

Th overal aim of this articl is to examn how th presnt difrnces beween languajs myt be reduced by adoptng comn stratejis to harmnize ther ritn forms. In ordr to take stok of ther presnt disharmny, we need first to considr how ther diverjnces arose. By defnition, we can only take acount of those languajs that use th roman alfabet (thus japnese, chinese, th languajs of th indian subcontnnt, arabic, hebrew, greek, and th cyrilic-script languajs ar excluded), and among them we shal larjly confine ourselvs to european languajs that draw widely for ther vocablry (even if thru loanwords) upon a shared fund of greco-latn roots. A furthr limitation to this exrcise is that it is ritn chiefly from an english perspectiv. This may, howevr, be justifyd first by th extreme confusion of english spelng vis-á-vis cognate forms in othr languajs (th intrnationl frustration caused by th confusion of english spelng is indeed th ultmat motivation for th ideas presentd here), and secnd by th fact that th vast lexicl overlap between english on th one hand, and jermanic languajs, romance languajs, and ancient greek on th othr, provides a useful vantaj point from wich to survey th brod orthografic situation across th ranje of such languajs. It is hoped that th english bias of th presnt paper may encuraj readrs to considr th issus rased from th perspectiv of othr languajs too, and that its messaj may seem to hav som relevnce for languaj planng in th futur in jenrl.

Most letrs of th roman alfabet as we no it today (A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I/J, [K], L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U/V, X, [Y], [Z]) orijnated with th romans, ho took almost al ther letrs from etruscn and/or greek; th only letr they inventd themselvs was G. Th only modrn letr entirely absnt from ther alfabet is w, but som othr letrs wer restrictd in ther use in latn: K rarely ocurd, th modrn letr-pairs I/J, UV wer not orthograficly distinguishd, and Y, Z wer first adoptd from greek in th classicl period, wen they wer needd to translitrate th many greek loans. Th latn alfabet mor or less suficed to represent al th fonemes of classicl latn without recorse to digrafs or diacritics, and it ofrd, by and larj, an admrbly clear, simpl and straitforwrd riting systm, wich is no dout wy its use has now spred around th gretr part of th world. Nevrthless, it did contain, or else aquired, a few complications: among th consnnts, it had inheritd C and Q (not to mention K) with rufly th same sound-valu; as regards th vowls, ther long and short valus wer not regulrly distinguishd in riting, and AE, OE developd in th corse of time from difthongs into digrafs; and th thre greek letrs theta, chi, phi wer translitrated by th digrafs TH, CH, PH. Al of these groups of complications ar implicated in importnt disparitis between th spelng systms of modrn european languajs.

Th simplicity of th orijnl latn alfabet servd classicl latn wel, partly because it was desynd to do so, and partly because of th simpl fonolojy of th languaj. In post-roman times two kinds of problms arose with it, howevr. One was that th pronunciation of latn itself chanjed, eventuly givng rise, via vulgr latn, to numerus succesr-languajs, with french, italian, portugese, romanian, spanish today th nationl languajs of corespondng european states. For these languajs th orijnl latn orthografy was adaptd in varius ways (for instnce by introducing digrafs and diacritics) to represent fonemes inadequatly caterd for by th orijnl latn alfabet, but ther was no atemt at co-ordnation between these languajs. Th secnd kind of problm was that othr european languajs, notebly celtic, jermanic and slavonic, over th centuris began aplyng th latn alfabet to represent ther fonolojis as wel, to wich, since they wer not desendd from latn, th orijnl invntry of letrs was even less wel suitd. Wile they ofn, like th latn-desendd languajs, adoptd digrafs and diacritics to help out, they also somtimes introduced new letrs of ther own, as th anglo-saxns did for Old English, wich then pasd them on to varius scandnavian languajs (old norse, icelandic, norwejan, danish) befor shedng them itself. Again, ther was no question of co-ordnation between al these difrnt languajs as they developd ther riting systms. In these varius ways, then, wat had orijnated as a simpl, purpos-desynd, homojeneus riting-systm for latn spawnd a plethra of difrnt, conflictng subsystms, ofn using th same letrs for difrnt functions and representng th same sounds with difrnt letrs.

Sevrl questions now arise. First, wud ther be any significnt advantaj to be gaind from planng to harmnize som of these disparitis? Secnd, wud it be orgnizationly or politicly posbl to do so? And third, if so, to wich precise chanjes myt priority be givn? In ansr to th first question, a few advantajs that wud flo from such orthografic harmnization wil next be sujestd. One or two obsrvations wil then be made in ansr to th secnd question, wile in ansr to th third question som exampls of posbl prioritis wil be givn in th final section of this articl.

Wat advantajs myt flo if steps wer taken towards th harmnization of th orthografis of european languajs? In th most jenrl terms, harmnization wud be in keepng with th presnt trend towards european unification. (Of corse, euroskeptics and othr nationlists wud no dout find orthografic harmnization objectionbl for that very reasn.) Rathr less jenrl is th point that th lejbility of texts in any one european languaj wud be incresed (thru th gretr familiarity of word-forms) for speakrs litrat in othr languajs: italian, portugese and spanish cud be closer, so cud danish, norwejan and swedish, and so cud duch and jermn; but most notebly, english cud be closer to al of those othr languajs. Most specificly of al, a numbr of curent languaj lernng problms wud be reduced or removed. For instnce, at presnt th simlr but not identicl spelng of comn roots in difrnt languajs confuses foren languaj lernrs, ho, by a process of two-way intrference, ar then prone to mispel not only words in th foren languaj they ar lernng by intrference from ther mothr tong, but cognate forms in ther own languaj by intrference from th foren languaj too (eg, english negotiate spelt with c by intrference from french négocier). And likewise, tendncis to mispronounce in othr languajs cud be reduced if comn spelngs stood for comn pronunciations, and difrnt pronunciations wer mor consistntly representd by difrnt spelngs. Lastly, ther cud be intrnationl typograficl advantajs if languajs agreed to restrict ther ritn forms to th same invntry of symbls, so for instnce reducing th presnt exessiv, typograficly awkwrd variety of diacritics.

As for th feasbility of orthografic harmnization, a complex task of politicl and linguistic co-ordnation wud obviusly be involvd, wich in th case of sevrl languajs (english, french, portugese, spanish) wud extend beyond th boundris of Europ. Howevr, th same motivations cud somtimes aply outside Europe as within it: english in th United States has a perhaps even mor vital an intrface with spanish than british english has with othr european languajs; and one thinks of duch, english, french, spanish coexistng in th caribean rejon, or english, duch-based afrikaans and portugese in suthrn Africa.

Ar ther any precednts for orthografic harmnization? Certnly ther ar cases of th reverse, as wen norwejan accentuated its difrnces from danish, and danish and duch ther difrnces from jermn. [5] Both objections to and argumnts in favor of th recent partial asimlation of portugese to spanish and italian hav been voiced. [6] But a cupl of cases of succesful, pland harmnization can also be cited: in th Nethrlands and Beljm a joint languaj comission in th 1950s acheved som harmnization of th previusly rathr difrnt northrn and suthrn ritn varietis of duch, work wich th Nederlandse Taalunie has since been pursuing furthr; [7] and in southeast Asia, th respectivly english-based and duch-based spelng systms of th comn languaj of Malaysia and Indonesia wer harmnized in 1972 (only 6 years aftr th two cuntris had been at war with each othr!). [8]

3. Harmnization thru Cut Spelng.

Th Cut Spelng proposal for th simplification of traditionl english orthografy (=TO) was not initialy desynd for th purpos of harmnizing english spelng with that of othr languajs. Its basic notion of removing redundnt letrs from TO was first conceved purely to facilitate readng by th streamlining of text. [9] Howevr, as th details of th systm wer workd out during th 1980s, it became clear that it had a numbr of othr qualitis beside gretr brevity, th most importnt being th improved regularity of sound-symbl and symbl-sound corespondnce wich resultd for instnce, most strikingly, from th removal of letrs like th grotesq silent gh. But it was also noticed, incidently, that a good numbr of th resultng forms brot english spelngs closer to ther equivlnts in varius othr languajs (as wel as ofn alynng british and americn variants). It was this obsrvation that promtd th ideas wich ar systmaticly set out in th presnt paper for th first time (they wer givn a prelimnry, skechy airng at a confrnce in 1991, [10] and wer obliqely anticipated in a paper in 1992. [11]) A detaild description of th Cut Spelling systm, with exrcises and a dictionry, can be found in th Cut Spelng Handbook [12] (a leaflet outlining th systm and a computerized spelng convertr ar availbl. [13]) Ther ar thre main patrns of spelng chanje by omission of redundnt letrs that CS makes to TO (defined undr Rules 1, 2, 3 respectivly), as wel as a few subsidiry rules.

Rule 1 omissions.

Listd in this section ar typicl omission patrns of redundnt letrs acordng to CS Rule 1 (that is, letrs irelevnt to pronunciation) wich bring ritn english closer to equivlnt spelngs in varius othr european languajs (as wel as somtimes alynng british and americn forms). It wil be noticed that, with th omission of certn letrs, ther is a tendncy for english spelng to alyn itself mor closely with particulr languajs, thus th omission of silent H alyns english predomnntly with italian, portugese, spanish, and th scandnavian languajs, wile th omission of silent U mainly introduces jermn spelng patrns. By and larj, th harmnization afects singl words, but ther ar som mor jenrl spelng patrns ocurng in sizeabl groups of words wich ar therby also harmnized, as wen greco-latn CH is cut to C (eg chaos > caos), so establishng widespred simlaritis with italian, portugese and spanish; likewise, wen WH is cut to W (eg what > wat), simlaritis arise with duch, jermn and to a lesr extent swedish. Exampls ar now givn for al th main spelng patrns concernd, and for som individul words.

anaemia (british)> anemia (americn): fr. anémie, it./port./sp. anemia
break > brek : duch breken, jer. brechen
cease > cese : fr. cesser, it. cessare, port. cessar, sp. cesar
earnest > ernest : jer. ernst
earth > erth : jer. Erde
endeavour > endevr : fr. devoir
feather > fethr : jer. Feder
hearse > herse : fr. herse (=engl. harro)
learn > lern : jer. lernen
leather > lethr : duch leder, jer. Leder
leaven > levn : fr. levain
measure > mesur : fr. mesure, jer. Mess-
pear > per : it./sp. pera, port. pêra
pearl > perl : fr. perle, jer. Perle, t./sp. perla, port. pérola
pleasure > plesur : welsh pleser
steak > stek : fr. biftek
tea > te : fr. thé, welsh te
tread > tred : duch treden, jer. treten
treasure > tresur : fr. trésor, it./sp. tesoro, port. tesouro
weather > wethr : jer. Wetter

crumb > crum : duch kruim, jer. Krümel
debt > det : fr. dette
doubt > dout : fr. doute
dumb > dum : jer. dumm/stumm (cf engl. dummy)
lamb > lam : jer. Lamm
plumb > plum : welsh plwm
thumb > thum : duch duim, jer. Daumen

scent > sent : fr. senteur
defence (british) > defense (americn): fr.défense, it. difesa, port. defesa, sp. defensa
dock > dok : turk. dok

adjourn > ajurn : fr. ajourner
adjust > ajust : fr. ajuster

caviare > caviar : jer. Kaviar
certificate > certificat : fr. certificat, jer. Zertifikat
climate > climat : fr. climat
delicate > delicat : fr. délicat
discipline > disiplin : da./sw. disciplin, jer. Disziplin, norw. disiplin
doctorate>doctrat : fr. doctorat, jer. Doktorat
doctrine > doctrin : jer. Doktrin, sw. doktrin
glue > glu : fr. glu
Greece > Grece : fr. Grèce
grotesque > grotesq : du., jer., norw., sw. grotesk
heart > hart : duch hart
hearth > harth : duch haard
immediate > imediat : fr. immédiat
interest > intrest : sw. intresse
jasmine > jasmin : fr. jasmin
masculine > masculin : fr. masculin, jer. maskulin
medicine > medcin : jer. Medizin
module > modul : jer. Modul
nature > natur : jer. Natur, scand. natur
private > privat : jer./scand. privat
procedure > procedur : jer. Prozedur, sw. procedur
revenue > revnu : fr. revenu
rheumatism > rumatism : fr. rhumatisme
see > se : sw. se
syndicate > syndicat : fr. syndicat
tissue > tissu : fr. tissu
type > typ : jer. Typ, sw. typ
urine > urin : jer. Urin
virtue > virtu : fr. vertu

diaphragm > diafram : it. diaframma
gnaw > naw : jer. nagen
haughty > hauty : fr. haut
phlegm > flem : it. flemma, port. fleuma, sp. flema sovereign > sovren : fr. souverain, jer. souverän,
it. sovrano, port./sp. soberano

catarrh > catar : it./port./sp. catarro chaos > caos : it./port./sp. caos character > caractr : fr. caractére,
it. carattere, port. caráter, sp. carácter
chorus > corus : it./port./sp. coro
chrysalis > crysalis : it. crisalide, sp. crisálida
exhort > exort : it. esortare
gherkin >gerkn : jer. Gurke
ghetto > geto : jer. Getto
ghost > gost : duch geest, jer. Geist
heir > er : it. erede
honest > onest : it. onesto
honour > onr : it. onore
hour > our : it. ora, welsh awr
khaki > kaki : fr./sw. kaki, it. cachi, port. cáqui, sp. caqui
monarch > monrc : it./port./sp. monarca
myrrh > myr : sp. mirra
ochre > ocre : it. ocra, fr,/port./sp. ocre
psychology > sycolojy : it./port. psicologia, sp. sicología, scand. psykologi
rhapsody > rapsody : it./sp. rapsodia, port. rapsódia, scand. rapsodi
rhetorical> retoricl : it. retorico, port./sp. retórico, sw. retorisk
rheumatism > rumatism , it./port./sp.reumatismo, dan.reumatisme, nor. revmatisme, sw. reumatism
rhododendron > rododendron, it./port./sp. rododendro
rhubarb > rubarb : it. rabarbaro, port./sp. ruibarbo, sw. rabarber
rhyme > rym : fr. rime, it./port./sp. rima, jerm. Reim, sw. rim
rhythm > rythm : it./port./sp. ritmo, sw. rytm
scholar > scolr : sp. escolar
school > scool : it. scuola, sw. skola
stomach > stomac : it. stomaco
technical > tecnicl : it. tecnico, port./sp. técnico, sw. teknisk
Thames > Tams : fr. Tamise, it. Tamigi, port. Tamisa, sp. Támesis
thyme > tym : it. timo
what > wat : duch wat, jer. was, sw. vad
wheat > weat : jer. Weizen, sw. vete
wheel > weel : duch wiel
while > wile : duch wijl, jer. weil (=because)
whine > wine : jer. weinen
white > wite : duch wit, sw. vit

achieve > acheve : fr. achever
business > busness : welsh busnes
juice > juce : fr. jus
lieutenant > leutennt : jer. Leutnant
migraine > migrane : jer. Migräne
moraine > morane : jer. Moräne
parliament > parlamnt : jer. Parlament
receive > receve : fr. recevoir

hallelujah > aleluia : it alleluia, sp. aleluya

almond > amnd : fr. amande
salmon > samn : fr. saumon

brooch > broch : fr. broche
foetus (british)> fetus (americn),:it./port./sp. feto
oesophagus > esofagus : it. esofago, sp. esófago
taboo > tabu : jer./port./sp. tabu, it. tabù
you > u : duch U

pneumatic > numatic : sp. neumático
psalm > salm : it./port./sp. salmo
pseudo > sudo : sp. seudo
psychology > sycolojy : sp. sicología
receipt > receit : fr. recette
sapphire > safire : fr. saphir, it./sp. zafiro, port. safira, sw. safir
tempt > temt : fr. tenter, welsh temtio

isle > ile : fr. ile/île [14]

butcher > buchr : fr. boucher
hatchet > hachet : fr. hachette
kitchen > kichn : jer. Küche
Mitchell > Michl : fr. Michel
pitch > pich : jer. Pech
pitcher > pichr : fr. pichet
satchel > sachl : fr. sachet
stitch > stich : jer. Stich
thatch > thach : jer. Dach
watch > wach : jer. wachen

build > bild : jer. bilden
dialogue > (americn) dialog,:da./sw. dialog, jer. Dialog
fugue > fuge : jer. Fuge
guarantee > garantee : fr. garantie, jer. Garantie, sw. garanti
guard > gard : fr. garde
guess > gess : sw. gissa
guest > gest : jer. Gast
guild > gild : jer. Gilde
gitar > gitar : jer. Gitarre
intrigue > intrige : da. intrige, jer. Intrige
plague > plage : da. plage, jer. Plage
Prague > Prag : jer. Prag
vague > vage : jer. vage

whole > hole : jer. heil, sw. hel
whore > hor : jer. Hure, norw. hore
wring > ring : jer. ringen
write > rite : jer. reißen

Reynard > Renrd : fr. renard
you > u : duch U

Exampls of spelng harmnization arising from Cutng Rules 2 & 3, and from th CS substitution rules, as wel as th jenrl conclusion, follo in Part II of this articl, to apear in JSSS 25 1999/1.


[1] Luigi Luca CAVALLI-SFORZA (1991) 'Genes, Peoples and Languages' in Scientific American, November 1991, pp72-78.

[2] Charles DARWIN (1859) On the Origin of Species by means of natural selection or the preservation of favoured races the struggle for life, London: John Murray (page reference to London: Unit Library, 1902, pp388-389): "If we possessed a perfect pedigree of mankind, a genealogical arrangement of the races of man would afford the best classification of the various languages now spoken throughout the world."

[3] Chris STRINGER (1990) 'The Asian Connection' in New Scientist, 17 November 1990, pp33-37.

[4] cf also 'Building Babel in Brussels' in The Economist, 6 august 1994, p34.

[5] R G BAKER (1985) 'Spelling Reform and Politics: the Case of Norwegian' in Simplified Spelling Society Newsletter, J1 Autumn 1985, p8.

[6] Robert MAYHEW (1975) 'The Historic Portuguese Spelling Reform' in ed Newell W Tune Spelling Reform, a comprehensive survey of the advantages, educational benefits, and obstacles to adoption, North Hollywood, California: Spelling Progress Bulletin (2nd edition 1982), pp75-76.

[7] A H D SIMONSZ (1986) 'From around the World - Netherlands' in Simplified Spelling Society Newsletter, J3, Summer 1986, p15; also
Jean-Marc TROUILLE (1987) 'Changes in the Spelling of Dutch' in Journal of the Simplified Spelling Society, 1987/2, pp14-16.

[8] Asmah Haji OMAR (1989) 'The Malay Spelling Reform' in Journal of the Simplified Spelling Society. J11 1989/2, pp9-13.

[9] Valerie YULE (1982) 'Shorter words mean faster reading', in New Scientist 9 December 1982, pp656-657.

[10] The basic concept containd in th presnt articl was givn a prelimnry airng undr th title Literacy without Frontiers: the Problem of Spelling at the 7th European & 28th United Kingdom Reading Association Annual Conference, held at Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh, 29 July-1 August 1992.

[11] Christopher UPWARD (1992) 'English Spelling and its Reform' in terminologie & traduction, Luxemburg: Commission of the European Communities, 1992/1, pp61-80, se especialy §6.2.

[12] Christopher UPWARD (2nd edition 1996) Cut Spelling: a handbook to the simplification of written English by omission of redundant letters, Birmingham: Simplified Spelling Society.

[13] Christopher UPWARD (1998) leaflet: Introducing Cut Spelling: written English simplified by cutting redundant letters, Birmingham: Simplified Spelling Society.

[14] For ile without th circmflex accent, se 'Les Rectifications de l'Orthographe-texte officiel' in Le Français dans le monde No.239, §3.3, feb.-mar. 1991.

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