Remember those pet peeves?

Subject: Remember those pet peeves?
From: Janice Gelb <janice -dot- gelb -at- sun -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Tue, 02 May 2006 15:39:12 +1000

Read this story about common spelling abuses becoming accepted and weep:

According to the Oxford English Corpus, a database of a
billion words, dozens of traditional phrases are now more
commonly misspelled than rendered correctly in written English.


"Straight-laced" is used 66 per cent of the time even
though it should be written "strait-laced", according to
lexicographers working for Oxford Dictionaries, who record
the way English is spoken and written by monitoring books,
television, radio and newspapers and, increasingly,
websites and blogs.

"Just desserts" is used 58 per cent of the time instead of
the correct spelling "just deserts" (desert is a variation
of deserve), while 59 per cent of all written examples say
a "font of knowledge or wisdom" when it should be "fount".
It has become so widely used that the wrong version is now
included in Oxford dictionaries alongside the right one.

Other mistakes fast becoming the received spelling
include substituting "free reign" for the correct phrase,
"free rein". The original refers to letting a horse loose,
but many use "reign" and assume the expression means to
allow a free rule.

Other examples of common mistakes include "slight of
hand" instead of "sleight"; "phased by" when it should be
"fazed by"; "butt naked" instead of the correct "buck naked"
and "vocal chords" for "vocal cords."

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