Thursday, December 4, 2008

How Good is Your Spelling?

Long-time friend of Cumberland House and author, Martin Manser, is a reference-book editor and language trainer & consultant in the UK where he offers courses to writers, companies, and university students. For full details of his open public courses held in London and also details of tailor-made courses, see his Language Trainer and Consultant page:

Here's a fun little spelling quiz from his December newsletter. I scored a "very good," which was generous.

1 a stupefying/stupifying effect
2 the forword/forward/foreword to the book
3 a forgone/foregone conclusion
4 the troubled period of adolesence/adolescence
5 a stand-up arguement/argument
6 and other miscellaneous/misellanious/miscellanious items
7 I am very loath/loathe to say no
8 the South African system of apartheid/aparthied/apartheit
9 the yoke/yolk of slavery
10 an insurance waver/waiver
11 the rudimentary principles/principals of physics
12 lackered/laquered/laqueured/lacquered wood
13 What impeccible/impeccable behaviour!
14 Yours truly/truely, Freda
15 They’re just good friends/freinds
16 a hypersensitive/hyposensitive personality
17 to canvass/canvas/cannvass public opinion
18 He suffers from agoraphobia/agraphobia
19 the national curriculum/curiculum in education
20 to seek professional/profesional/proffessional advice
21 The economy is not very boyant/buoyant at the moment
22 She complemented/complimented him on his fine appearance
23 Clostrophobia/Claustrophobia is the fear of being in enclosed places
24 He was severely censored/censured/censered for the brutality of the attack
25 in ecstacy/ecstasy/exstacy at the thought.

Answers to spelling quiz (above)
1 stupefying
2 foreword
3 foregone
4 adolescence
5 argument
6 miscellaneous
7 loath
8 apartheid
9 yoke
10 waiver
11 principles
12 lacquered
13 impeccable
14 truly
15 friends
16 hypersensitive
17 canvass
18 agoraphobia
19 curriculum
20 professional
21 buoyant
22 complimented
23 claustrophobia
24 censured
25 ecstasy

25 out of 25: well done! 20-24 very good. 15-20 fair. Below 15: you are relying too much on your spellchecker!

Despite all the advanced points of writing that I am often asked about on courses, I often find participants on my courses need help in basic points of grammar. So, remember, whether you’re looking for a refresher course on the basics or you simply want to increase your confidence in more advanced aspects of writing, email me and I’m be glad to help.

As ever, don’t forget that if you regularly write for more than an hour a day, you could benefit from brushing up on your skills in writing and editing.

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