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Commonly Misspelled Words

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There are a great number of rules that apply to the correct spelling of words in American English. There are also a great number of words whose spelling does not conform to the rules. It is not surprising that correct spelling is difficult for many students.

Here are some of the words that are most commonly misspelled. For each word there is the most common misspelling of the word. You may find that you use some of these misspellings in your writing. For each word there is also a clue that will help you spell the word correctly.

Commonly Misspelled Words
Word Common Misspelling Clue
acquire aquire Don’t forget the c after the first letter.
argument arguement There is no e after the u.
basically basicly Ends with ally.
bizarre bizzare There is only one z, but a double r.
committee commitee There are 3 double letters; m, t, e.
definitely definately It is ite, not ate.
familiar familar It ends with iar not ar.
forty fourty There is no u here.
friend freind Put the i before the e.
government goverment There is a n before the m.
grammar grammer Ends with ar, not er.
inoculate innoculate There is only one n here.
interrupt interupt Remember to double that r.
knowledge knowlege Don’t forget the d.
liaison liason Remember there is an i both before and after the a.
occasion occassion There is a double c, but just one s.
occurrence occurence There is a double c and a double r.
pavilion pavillion No, there is no double l here.
persistent persistant That’s ent, not ant at the end.
possession posession There are a whole bunch of s’s, four to be exact.
sense sence It ends with se, not ce.
separate seperate Remember there is par in the middle, not per.
supersede supercede That’s a s after super, not a c.
surprise surprize There is a s before the last letter, not a z.
threshold threshhold There is only one h in the middle.
truly truely There is no e here.
unforeseen unforseen Don’t forget the e after for.
which wich Remember to put an h after the w.

This list is just a sample of the many words that are commonly misspelled. When you find yourself misspelling a word, come up with a clue to help you remember the correct spelling of the word.

All articles in the Language Arts category:

Building Vocabulary Capitalization Rules Choosing a Topic
Common Foreign Phrases Common Prefixes Commonly Misspelled Words
Confusing Pairs of Words Critical Reading Eponyms
Expository Writing Five Paragraph Essay Forming Plurals
Idioms Metaphors Number Prefixes
Parts of Speech Phonics Rules Proofreading
Using Punctuation Marks Reading Comprehension Reading Novels
Revising and Editing an Essay Similes Spelling Long Words
Transition Words and Phrases Useful Spelling Rules Using Quotation Marks
Word Identification Writing a Book Report Writing a Narrative Essay
Writing a Persuasive Essay Writing a Research Paper Writing Numbers
Writing Techniques Writing Terms  

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