Every year, Toastmasters clubs throughout the world run contests where speakers give speeches
which may or may not be funny and amusing. As clubs, areas and above arrange these contests,
notices and emails are sent out which mis-spell the key word for the contest: its name. For
the benefit of people who are not sure, I wish to furnish the correct spelling of some words,
along with their meanings:
There are a fair number of other words which may catch people out. Grammar is one obvious one,
and don't spell it with an E. The story goes that it was one of the most popular spelling
mistakes in England, which is why high schools there are frequently "grammar schools". The
idea is that the students will see the correct spelling of the word at least twice every day,
as they enter and leave, as well as on so many other school notices. This scheme does not seem
to work well.
- humor A United States word, out of scope for this article which is aimed at an
audience in "the rest of the world" or "international" or "foreign"...
- humour A mental quality which apprehends and delights in the ludicrous and
mirthful: that which causes mirth and amusement
What a delightful definition we have above from Chambers English Dictionary, far more
picturesque than anything I could have written myself. So far so good...
- humorous Full of humour, exciting laughter. This spelling is correct everywhere in
the world: humourous is *wrong*, I'm sorry to say. Mark the scorecard with a zero, which will
put the writer in a bad humour, I fear.
- humerus A bone of the upper arm. It is facetiously referred to as the "funny bone",
the result of a bad pun, also resulting in too much incorrect spelling. Don't accept anything
like this as a spelling unless you are doing something with bones...
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