[Back to part 1, part 2.]

September 1917/3 part 3.


The membership ov the Sosyeti nou numbers 2862.

Our Speling at See!

From "Ashore and Afloat" we taik the folœing lynz:-

"When the English tongue we speak,
Why is 'break' not rhymed with 'freak'?
Will you tell me why it's true
We say 'sew,' but likewise 'few';
And the maker of a verse
Cannot cap his 'horse' with 'worse'?
'Beard' sounds not the same as 'heard';
'Cord' is different from 'word'
'Cow' is 'cow,' but 'low' is 'low';
'Shoe' is never rhymed with 'foe.'
Think of 'hose' and 'dose' and 'lose';
And of 'goose' and think of 'choose.'
Think of 'comb' and 'tomb' and 'bomb'
'Doll' and 'roll' and ' home' and 'some.'
And since 'pay' is rhymed with 'say.'
Why not 'paid' with 'said,' I pray?
We have 'blood' and 'food' and 'good';
'Mould' is not pronounced as 'could.'
Wherefore 'done,' but 'gone' and 'lone'?
Is there any reason known?
And, in short, it seems to me
Sound and letters disagree."

[See a version stating the source, and other spelling poems.]

Whot "Child Study" thinks ov "Braiking the Spel."

"This iz the best ov the pamflets so far iseud by this indefatigabel propagandist sosyeti. The Maaster ov Euniversiti Kolej, Oxford, kontribeuts a wyz prefais; the kais for chainj iz staited with restraint; kritisizmz ar aanserd with a larjer shair ov sweet reezonabelnes than sumtymz karakteryzez such replyz; and the propœzd skeem iz kairfooli eksplaind. We mai graant that much tym wood be saivd, beter speech wood be promœted, and the lyklihood ov English bekuming the dominant langwij ov the werld wood be inkreest, by the adopshon ov such a sistem - the problem remainz ov arouzing sufishent dryving fors tu kauz the prezent jeneraishon tu undergœ a sertin inkonveeniens that the nekst jeneraishon mai profit."

Benjamin Franklin az a suporter ov Speling Reform.

In a leter tu a Mrz. Jane Mewny, daited Philadelplia, July 4, 1786, Benjamin Franklin roet:
You need not be concerned, in writing to me, about your bad spelling, for in my opinion, as our alphabet stands, the bad spelling, or what is called so, is generally the best, as conforming to the sound of the letters and of the words. To give you an instance.

A gentleman received a letter in which were these words: "Not finding Brown at hom, I delivered your meseg to his yf." The gentleman, finding it bad spelling, and therefore not very intelligible, called his lady to help him read it. Between them they picked out the meaning of all but the yf, which they could not understand. The lady proposed calling her chambermaid, "because Betty," says she, "has the best knack at reading bad spelling of anyone I know." Betty came, and was surprised that neither sir nor madam could tell what yf was. "Why," says she, "yf spells 'wife'; what else can it spell?" And, indeed, it is a much better, as well as shorter, method of spelling "wife" than doubleyou, i, ef, e, which in reality spells "doubleyifey."
- Bigelow: Autobiography of Franklin.

Denyd the Doktrin ov Gravitaishon.

Dr. Guthrie relaits a stori ov Mr. Wilson, an œld klerjiman ov the parish ov Abernyte, hoo woz no beleever in Ser Isaac Newton. He stoutli denyd the doktrin ov gravitaishon, and, being a devout, good man, much interested in mishonz tu the heethenz, bewaild the erorz ov Dr. Duff, the Eest Indian mishonari.

"He iz taiking kwyt a rong kors. He iz endevoring tu subvert Hinduizm by syens, faulsli so kauld - a filosofi az erœnius az the doktrinz ov Brahminizm - and the fulkrum by which he werks iz Ser Isaac Newton'z doktrin ov gravitaishon."

"But shoorli, Mr. Wilson," aaskt Dr. Guthrie, "eu beleev in the doktrin ov gravitaishon?"

"Sertinli not!" he replyd; and tu my grait amaizment went intu a long eksplanaishon ov its feutiliti. Faining haaf beleef in Mr. Wilson'z argeuments, Dr. Guthrie aaskt him "hou it woz that the inhabitants on the opozit syd ov the erth stuk on, and did not faul with thair hedz dounwerdz for ever and ever intu boundles spais?"

"Wel, Ser, that duz apeer a difikulti; but it iz tu be akounted for in sum such wai az a fenomenon we ar familiar with at hœm -- that thai keep on just az the flyz doo, hoo, with thair baks downwerdz and thair feet upwerdz az eu see them, wauk along the seeling ov the room!"

Az we laaf at Mr. Wilson tudai, anuther jeneraishon wil laaf at Dr. Trench and hiz ydeaz regarding English speling and etimoliji.

A Good Egzaampel.

Thair iz a "Simpler Spelling Society of the North Central States" (U.S.A.). Its Prezident iz Dr. Nathaniel Butler, Profesor ov Edeukaishon in the Euniversiti ov Chicago; its Vys-Prezident iz Dr. E. J. James, Prezident ov the Euniversiti ov Illinois; and its Sekretari iz Mr. E. O. Vaile, a reformer tu hooz keennes and entheuziazm we pai wiling tribeut, tho we hav not aulwaiz been aibel tu subskryb tu hiz veuz regarding the N.E.A. alfabet. We lern from a serkeular leter iseud by the uther S.S.S. that the sum ov too thouzand dolarz haz been kolekted for the printing ov fonetik primerz.

We ov the English S.S.S. hav spent a good deel on the printing ov our Ferst Reeder, and The Sekond Reeder iz neering publikaishon, and wil hav tu be paid for. Wil sumwun send us too thouzand dolarz, or eeven too dolarz?

It's so Simpel!

"Wun keurius argeument in faivor ov the prezent speling iz that, if our tradishonal speling iz bad for Anglo-Saxonz, it iz good for forinerz, bekauz for them it iz so eezi, so nateural, so lyk thair œn! For wun klaas ov peepel, then, our speling iz eezi, and thai aut not tu maik eni mistaiks. Good. Iz it so? Deuring my werk on Optez [Mr. Bond'z internashional langwij] I hav been ameuzd tu obzerv in forin vokabeulariz by eminent forin skolarz the folœing spelingz:- 'Saft (=soft), slobe (=slope), whrite, wett, remaine, horsback, goos, neverhelles, admitt, walley, pourchase, propell, lisense,' ets. The mœst ameuzing iz for 'paddle' 'dabble,' and for 'lightning' 'tunder.'"

Remember this.

"Everi neu trooth must, ov nesesiti be, in the ferst instans, konfynd tu a smaul minoriti. If eniwun konsider it hiz deuti tu promulgait it, and if it be wun which opœzez the jeneral kurent ov opinion, on materz held saikred and improper for diskushon, he must be prepaird for oblokwi and persekeushon eevn tho hiz œn kondukt mai hav been free from akrimoni and unnesesari wormth."
- From Man, Social and Moral, by GEORGE SPARKES.

The Eusfool U.

Thair iz an interesting poester outsyd a restaurant in Piccadilly giving the folœing advys:-

Let the menU beat the U men.
If U fast the U shark U beat.
The U shark beats U if U feast.

Thair ar several pikteurz round the pœster shœing submareenz, shaipt lyk sharks, torpeedœing ships.


Aneual Memberz.
Misez E. L. Hudson, B.A., Croydon.
Edith Law, M.A., Dundee.
Helen Law, M.A., Dundee.
Edith Luke, M.A., Morgan Academy, Dundee.
Margaret Newall, - School, Wimbledon.
Mesrs. E. Anderson, Birmingham.
G. W. Haines, London.
John Brown, Ayrshire.
G. A. S. Oliver, Nottingham.
Walter Francis Westbrook, London.
Canadian Braanch.
Prins. A. B. Cooper, B.A., Ontario, Canada.
A. Pearson, B.A., - School, Ontario, Canada.
Indian Branch.
Mesrz. V. Kesava Rao, Mrs. - College, Vizagapatam, India.
A. Ramaiya, - College, Mannargudi, S. India.


Joon, Jooli, and August.

ARTIKELZ in faivor ov speling reform wer given prominens in: Daily Graphic, Education, Indiaman, Journal of Education, Ulster Guardian.

LETERZ wormli advokaiting reform wer printed in: Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald (2 leterz), Barry Dock News, Education Authorities Gazette, Liverpool Journal of Commerce, Liverpool Journal of Nursing, Newcastle Daily Journal (2 leterz), North Mail, Schoolmaster (2 leterz), Times Educational Supplement (10 leterz), Yorkshire Post.

FERTHER jenerus reveuz ov Breaking the Spell (4d. net), reesentli publisht by the Sosyeti. apeerd in: Aberdeen Daily Journal, A. M. A., Athenaeum, Educational Times, Teachers' Times.

SIMPATHETIK REFERENSEZ tu speling reform wer obzervd in: Barry Dock News, Globe, Newspaper World.

An English Pronouncing Dictionary, by Daniel Jones, M.A., woz reveud at length in the Saturday Review.


It haz been desyded tu publish THE PYONEER kworterli until pees iz restord.

THE PYONEER iz sent graitis tu aul Memberz ov the Simplifyd Speling Sosyeti. The aneual subskripshon for Asœshiait Memberz iz a minimum ov wun shiling, that for Aktiv Memberz a minimum ov fyv shilingz. Mor muni menz mor pouer tu kari on the kampain.

Reederz ar erjd tu aply for leeflets seting forth the aimz ov the Sosyeti. Theez and aul uther informaishon wil be gladli sent by the Sekretari ov the Simplifyd Speling Sosyeti, London.

[The inside of the front cover is missing, but probably has the Officers and Committee members.]

[Inside back cover:]

Among your friends and acquaintances there are thinking people who care for

Efficiency and Economy in Education.


whether any of the following objections to a reform of the spelling
have occurred to them:

1. It would interfere with the growth of the language and obscure the derivation of words.

2. To give the same spelling to such words as right, write, and rite would lead to confusion.

3. A spelling according to the sounds assumes the existence of the standard speech, which we do not possess.

4. The language constantly changes, and a spelling in accordance with the sounds would be always changing, which would be intolerable.

5. The present spelling is beautiful, and any change would make it ugly.


whether they have realised the following advantages that would
result from the adoption of a rational spelling:

A 1. Much of the child's brief education time would be saved.

A 2. Spellings would be taught in a reasonable way.

A 3. The teaching of our language and literature would be improved; other school subjects would also benefit.

A 4. The English language would spread rapidly throughout the empire, and might become the language for universal intercourse.


by using the arguments that by this time are doubtless familiar to you; or, if you prefer it, send a postcard to the Assistant Secretary, S.S.S, London, asking for one or all of the pamphlets in our Objections Series (O1 - O5) and our Advantages Series (A1 - A4), which deal briefly but convincingly with all the points that have been enumerated.

[On the outside of the back cover:]


For stryking rezults in teeching reeding tu yung children euz


The sekond edishon iz the rezult ov an eksperiment in a Scottish Skool,
whair children hoo wer taut for TEN munths from the Reeder and
for FOR munths in ordinari speling red and spelt az wel az children
hoo for NYNTEEN munths had been taut on konvenshonal lynz œnli.

speech training provyded by the FERST REEDER.


ORDER from the Simplifyd Speling Sosyeti, London.

"We hav peroozd with much keuriositi and interest 'A Ferst Reeder in Simplifyd Speling,' publisht by the Simplifyd Speling Sosyeti and we konfes we ar konsiderabli imprest with the merits ov 'this litel book, prepaird for children hoo ar just beginning tu reed books.' The introdukshon of the book intu skoolz seemz wel werth eksperiment."

The SEKCOND REEDER iz in pres and wil be redi shortly.
Redeust termz tu teechers hoo uez the book in klaasez.

C.F. Hodgson & Son, Printerz, London.

Back to the top.