There are words that we’ve said a hundred times before, if not more, but have never written down. Then, one day, we’re faced with that odd occasion where – for the first time – we have to jot down a word we’ve said countless times… and it’s a bugger to spell / looks nothing like the way in which it’s pronounced.
I have a ‘top 10 awkward words’ that, when I first went to write them, tripped me up.
Epitome – it doesn’t look right at all. It looks like it reads e-pi-tome, rather than e-pit-o-mee, but that’s the way it’s spelt.
Yosemite – the national park, in America. Not that I’ve had to write it too often, but it looks like it reads Yo-se-mite, or Yose-mite, instead of Yos-em-it-ee.
Naivety – Looks like it says nayv-ety when it actually says ny-eve-ety. Maybe the spelling is awkward as it was originally a French word. It can also be spelt with an accent above the ‘ai’, but for the purposes of this post, I can’t be arsed.
Nous – AKA common sense. I wasn’t sure how to spell this the first time, as it feels like it should have a ‘w’ in it, but that would make it ‘nows’. Turns out it’s closer to rhyming with ‘house’, give or take an ‘e’.
Succinct – horrible word to spell. I had to look it up the first time I put it in writing. Said suk-sinkt, spelt succinct.
Rhythm – It’s the h’s that get you, and the second half of the word feels like it needs a vowel i.e rhythim.
Millennial – the word mentioned every five minutes in marketing: ‘we must target millennials’.
It’s not the two l’s that trip you up, it’s the two n’s.
Liaison – It’s all too easy to miss out the second ‘i’ in this word… but then it would read lee-a-zon, when it should read lee-ay-zon.
Harass – why, in the name of all that’s sacred, does this word not contain both a double ‘r’ and a double ‘s’, like the word embarrass? I have no idea, but it’s one ‘r’ for harass.
Vice versa – ‘the opposite of’ / ‘the other way round’. I must’ve used this phrase 500 times before I ever wrote it down, and it’s another one I had to look up. I would’ve spelt the first word ‘visa’, but that would read as ‘veesa’. Then again, it is Latin. Written vice versa, said vy-se ver-sa.
Sooo, that’s my top 10 tricky words, when it came to spelling them for the first time – what about you? Which words tripped you up, or still do?