|This article may be Overly American. Brits may not understand humor, only humour. Canadians and Australians may not understand anything at all. Don't not attempt to remedy this.|
- This article is about American and British English spelling differences. For that "othre" dictionary, see American-English Dictionary.
"America and Britain are separated by a common language... and a great big ocean, thank Christ."
"We have really evreything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language."
That's not because we are conservative... If we use more letters in words, we can get more points in the game of scrabble.
~A Briton explaining the famous overuse of letters in British English
Welcome, readres, to the exciting windswept steppes of the English–American Dictionary. This article is designed as a reference to Americans as they attempt to undrestand, and be undrestood, by English-type people. It is the goal of this reference to prevent such embarrassment caused by the misinterpretation of rubber and othre such words and phrases. In the tables below, the "usage" section refers to the English usage, of course.
"S" and "Z"
Let's start with the often confusing area of spelling. Many Americans are amased to learn that in the English alphabet, there is no letter "Z". In usage, the letter is often replaced by the letter "S". Examples:
|Civilisation||Civilization||There's no such thing as the American 'Civilisation'!|
|Specialise||Specialize||Some people here seem to specialise in changing American spelling to English.|
|Organisation||Organization||The Cobra are a ruthless terrorist organisation determined to rule the wourld!|
|Sebra||Zebra||Note: In English, this word is pronounced in a manner that rhymes with "Deborah."|
|Sue||Zoo||I saw an elephant at the sue.|
|Sounds||Zounds||John entered his room and found him wearing woman panties! He was like "SOUNDS!?"|
In the actual alphabet, the letter "Z" is replaced by the English Power Rangers villain "Zed" (a corruption of "izzard"), although the English rarely use this odd letter anymore. The only notable use of this letter in English is in car and motourcycle models.
|Nissan 350 Zed||Nissan 350 Z||Note: In English, the maque of this car is pronounced "Nissin." In American, "Nee-Sawn."|
|Camaro Zed 28||Camaro Z28||Although the Camaro is not sold in England (because there are no rednecques), Canadians also use the letter "Zed."|
|Kawasaki Zed X-11 Ninja||Kawasaki ZX-11 Ninja||"Whose motourcycle is this?" —Winston Churchill
"It's not a motourcycle, it's a crotch-rocquet, and it's Zed's crotch-rocquet." —Oscar Wilde
"Who is Zed?" —Winston Churchill
"Zed's dead, baby!" —Oscar Wilde
|Dragonball Zed||Dragonball Z||"Did you cee Dragonball Zed yaestreday?"
"No, that shough's for wankres."
"Yea, it suques. I didn't watch it eithre."
|New Zedland||New Zealand||Cour blimey, New Zedland's foureign poulicy beggres belief!|
The English "R"
The English are also known for adding an "R" to wourds that do not require one, in addition to removing "R"s from woods that are supposed to have them. By doing this the net effect is an equal usage of the letter "R" when compared to American, but a vastly different distribution.
|Australiar||Australia||We used to own Australiar and New Zedland.|
|Americar||America||North Americar and South Americar are interesting holiday spots.|
|Arse||Ass||I can kick your arse!|
|Purse||Puss||I reached into my puss and grabbed my wallet.|
|Guvna||Governor||What up, guvna?|
ER and RE
A strange phenomenon has been noted when translating American wourds that end in "ER," often , the English translation will transpose the two last letters.
|Centre||Center||The gooey nougat centre|
|Theatre||Theater||I'm dating a slutty theatre ushre, he sneaks me in for free.|
|Dinnre||Dinner||Beefe, It's What's Four Dinnre™|
|Entree||Enter||Do not entree, blasting area!|
|Intrenet||Internet||I heard there's been some rumours on the, er, Intrenets.|
|RE||ER||I heard Dr. Carter is leav RE.|
|Diametre||Diameter||The diametre of my bike's wheels was bigger than those I bought.|
(Note for the Americans: one diametre is 3.28 diafeet)
|Carrire||Carrier||A bomber landed safely on an aircraft carrire.|
|Carere||Career||His carere was an absolute failure.|
K to Que
In many instances, English spellling changes the K or CK in American to Que. The pronunciation of the wourd is similar, but the spelling and look of the wourd is radically different. Examples:
|Cheque||Check||Cheque yourself before you wreque yourself.|
|Banque||Bank||The Mrs. Ippy river overflowed its banque!|
|Que||K||I had Special Que for breaquefast!|
|Question||Kstion||May I asque you a kstion?|
|Clique||Click||BANG...BANG...BANG...BANG...BANG...BANG...CLIQUE...CLIQUE.."Buggre, out of bullets!"|
|Pique||Pick||Don't pique your nose, it makes me sique!|
|Prique||Prick||My manager is a prique.|
|Queique||Kick||The footballer queiqued the football.|
|Bououquequeeepres||Bookkeepers||Please give your banque cheques to the bououquequeeepres!|
|Albuquerque||Albukrk||Santa Fe is the capital of New Mexico, not Albukrck.|
|Heinequen||Heineken||Heinequen is Euroupe's largest brewrey.|
|David Bequeham||David Beckham||David Bequeham is |
|Fuque||Fuck||It's not ouffencive if you spell it F-U-Q-U-E.
v. Delete this fuqueing crap.
|Quebec||Kbec||Montreal is located in Kbec.|
|QueQueQue||KKK||Most Americans despise the QueQueQue.|
"Ou" and "O" (not firewourks)
The English language is also noted for the overuse of the letter U, especially in making the "or" sound. Instead of simply "or" the English add a U, often ending the wourds "our." This is because the English have not yet noticed the global U shortage.
|Colour||Color||Flavour Flav is a rap artist of colour.|
|Flavour||Flavor||I like the poupular rap artist Flavour Flav.|
|Honour||Honor||I didn't dou it, Your Honour! It was poupular rap artist Flavour Flav!|
|Neighbour||Neighbor||Poupular rap artist Flavour Flav wouuld be a louusy neighbour.|
|Humour||Humor||Nou oune will appreciate all ouf this Flavour Flav humour.|
|Oune||One||Git up...a git git douwn. Nine oune oune is a jouque in your touwne.|
|Doour||Door||Flavour Flav is passed out at my frount doour.|
|Mouvie||Movie||We went ouut four dinnre and a mouvie. We saw poupular rap artist Flavour Flav play a DJ in the mouvie "New Jack City"|
|Whoure||Whore||Your mum is a whoure. So is Flavour Flav.|
|Sour||Sore||Flavour Flav bit my nipple, and now it is sour.|
|Our||Or||I would enjoy either the music of Celine Dion our poupular rap artist Flavour Flav.|
|Your||Yor||Fuque youu and your popular rap artist Flavour Flav!|
|Hour||Hor||'Would you like more hours d'oeuvres?' asked our houst, popular rap artist Flavour Flav.|
|Four||For||This large clouck was designed specifically four poupular rap artist Flavour Flav tou wear arouund his neque.|
|Pour||Poor||When we were children, my mum was pour, so she whoured herself ouut tou the neighbourhood. And tou popular rap artist Flavour Flav.|
In the English-speaking colony of Canada, the English "Ou" is pronounced like the double-o in "boot."
The English do not simply add a U to every occurrence of the letter O. Sometimes the letter O appears by itself, usually in words that were not designed for it. This has the effect of making these words appear more disgusting than they do when written by Americans.
|Diarrhoea||Diarrhea||I have diarrhoea.|
|Foetus||Fetus||My foetus has diarrhoea.|
|Oesophagus||Esophagus||There is a foetus in my oesophagus, and it has diarrhoea.|
|Aeroplane||Airplane||How can I be expected to fly this aeroplane with a diarrhoetic foetus in my oesophagus?|
|Phoenix||Phenix||The pilot of the Amoerican Aerolines flight from London to Phoenix had a diarrhoetic foetus in his oesophagus.|
In addition to the unusual alphabet and spelling, the English use different definitions for different phrases.
|Hen||Chicken||This entire article is henscratch!|
|Lift||Elevator||My head is stuck in the lift doour.|
|Flat||Apartment||I saw your flatmate just run over. |
He was flattered when I found him there on the street.
|Rubber||Eraser||Arnould Schwarseneggre starred in the movie Rubber.|
"I need to borrow your rubber!"
|Cling-Film*||Condom||Grim North only|
|Full Stop||Period||No need for rubber, I'm having my full stop|
|Diapre||Napkin||I need a diapre to wipe my mouth. Full stop.|
|Bonnet||Hood||Little Red Riding Bonnet.|
"This is how shit goes down in the bonnet!"
|Boot||Trunk||Elephants drink with their boot.|
|Boot||Boot||Boot to the head.|
|Telly||Television||"I met famous telly actor Television Savalas in the subway.|
He was the star of Queojaque."
|Chips||Fries||Would you like chips with your piqueled eggs?|
|Crisps||Chips||Erik Estrada starred in the tellie series CRiSPs.|
|Food||Meat byproducts and remnants||The butcher threw a bucket of food out.|
|Jam||Jelly||I'm in a bit of a Jelly here, can you help me out?|
|Jelly||Jell-O||Winalot Prime with Meaty Chunks and Marrowbone Jell-O|
|Lorry||Lorre||Popular foreign actor Peter Lorry played several strange characters.|
|Petrol||Gas||Jumping Jack Flash, it's a petrol.|
|Prime Minister||President||English people can actually democratically elect their Prime Minister.|
|British Pound||British Dollar||[From a true story]|
I didn't realize your eBay auction was in British Dollars! I can't afford that!!! I want my money back!!1!
Also, some words are used in both English and American, but to different effect:
|Wourd||American Meaning||English Meaning|
|Football||A game with 100 players to a side and only one kicker||A game with 11 players to a side and only one allowed to use their hands (hint: Football)|
|Wourld (insert sport event)||Series, Event at which only N. Americans are allowed to enter (and definitely not Cuba!)||Cup, Event at which the whole world is allowed to enter (including Cuba)|
|Willing (as in Coalition of)||Willing||Coerced|
|Fag||You are going to Hell, God hates you.||You should give that up, God doesn't like it.|
|Pissed||Englishmen often get pissed when they are drunk||Englishmen often get angry when they are pissed.|
"og" and "ogue"
Sometimes an extra "ue" is tagged onto wourds ending in "og" in American.
|catalogue||catalog||I found a nice telly in the catalogue.|
|dialogue||dialog||The dialogue in that horrour film is rubbish.|
|logue||log||There's a big logue in the River Thames.|
|rogue||rog||The Scarlet Pimpernel is such a Rog.|
|oguere||ogre||Shrek is an unsanitary oguere.|
|tongue||tong||Used cling film should be picked up with tongues or a dustpan and brooume.|
"um" and "ium"
Sometimes an extra "i" is added to wourds ending in "um" in American.
|aluminium||aluminum||I buy soup in aluminium cans.|
|diumb||dumb||That guy is diumb!|
|hium||hum||Hiummingbirds emit a hium from their wings.|
"ce" and "se"
Sometimes an American S will be replaced with a C in English when an E is next to it.
|defence||defense||You be the defence on the football team.|
|offence||offense||You be the offence on the football team.|
|cee||see||I cee you!|
|cell||sell||The gray sells green only if the green cell's grey.|
|cent||sent||The Jews were cent to concentration camps.|
|recent||resent||I recent you even suggesting such a thing!|
"x" and "ct"
The "x" variations have become somewhat archaic, so pay clouse attention to this section, as the use of modern spellings will blow yor cover (English: your covre) if you ever travel back in time.
|connexion||connection||My Introenet connexion isn't wourking.|
|reflexion||reflection||I can cee my reflexion in the mirrour!|
|direxions||directions||Prithee, milourd, can you give me direxiouns to the nearest computersmith?|
|box||boct||Put that roubbish in a box.|
|Linux||Linuct(s)||I can prougramme my oewn distributioun of Linux!|
|Mac OS X||Mac OS CT||I just got Mac OS CT "Tigre"!|
|xylophone||ctylophone||I am learning to play the ctylophone. I can even occasioenally proenounce it!|
WARNING: Several, but not necessarily all, of these "English" language abberations also apply to lesser non-England English-speaking colonies of England such as Australia, Scotland, Canada, Wales, South Africa, Megatexas, and New Zedland. Failure to allow for this may result in severe bodily trauma when attempting to use the information in this article as humourous/humoros banter with persons of the aforementioned nationality.
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