English Grammar

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Spelling Rules

SPELLING RULES

Final Consonant


One-syllable words ending in single vowel + single consonant double the consonant before a suffix beginning with a vowel.
1. beg + ed = begged
2. rob + er = robber
3. run + ing = running
4. sad + est = saddest
but,
1. wish + ed = wished (two consonants)
2. fear + ing = fearing (two vowels)

Words of two or three syllables ending in single vowel + single consonant double the final consonant if the last syllable is stressed.
1. begin + ing = beginning
2. permit + ed = permitted
3. occur + ed = occurred
4. control + er = controller
The consonant is not doubled if the last syllable is not stressed.
1. benefit + ed = benefited
2. suffer + ing = suffering
These words are exceptions : worship, kidnap, handicap.
1. worship + ed = worshipped
2. kidnap + er = kidnapper
3. handicap + ed = handicapped

In British Englishthe the consonant l is doubled, even if the stress does not fall on the last syllable.
1. quarrel + ed = quarrelled
2. travel + er = traveller
3. signal + ing = signalling
4. distil + er = distiller
Note the exception :
parallel + ed = paralleled

If the word to which the suffix full is added ends in ll, the second l is dropped.
1. skill + ful = skilful
2. will + ful = wilful



Finale

Words ending in silent e drop the e before a suffix beginning with a vowel.
1. live + ing = living
2. hope + ing = hoping
3. move + ed = moved
4. drive + er = driver
The e remains before a suffix beginning with a consonant.
1. hope + ful = hopeful
2. engage + ment = engagement

Note the exceptions :
1. true + ly = truly
2. due + ly = duly
3. argue + ment =argument
4. whole + ly = wholly
5. nine + th = ninth
6. awe + ful = awful

Notice the special case of words ending in ce and ge which keep the e when adding able and ous.
1. notice + able = noticeable
2. change + able = changeable
3. peace + able = peaceable
4. courage + ous = courageous
In such words, the c and g are pronounced soft before e. Sometimes the e is retained to avoid confusion with a similar word.
1. singe + ing = singeing (avoids confusion with singing)
2. swinge + ing = swingeing (avoids confusion with swinging)

Words ending in ee do not drop an e before a suffix.
1. see + ing = seeing
2. agree + ment = agreement

Words ending in ie change the ie to y when ing is added.
1. die = dying
2. tie = tying
3. lie = lying

Finally

A final y following a consonant changes to i before a suffix except ing.
1. happy + ly = happily
2. beauty + ful = beautiful
3. carry + ed = carried
4. marry + age = marriage
But,
1. carry + ing = carrying
2. marry + ing = marrying
But y following a vowel does not change.
1. pray + ed = prayed
2. play + er = player

Notice a few exceptions :
1. pay + ed = paid
2. say + ed = said
3. lay + ed = laid
4. day + ly = daily
5. gay + ly = gaily



ie or ei

When ie or ei is pronounced like ee in 'jeep', i comes before e except after c.

1. believe
2. relieve
3. achieve
4. grieve
5. yield
6. field
ei
1. receive
2. receipt
3. deceive
4. deceit
5. conceive
6. conceit

Some exceptions :
1. seize
2. weired
3. protein
4. surfeit
5. counterfeit
6. plabeian

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