Monday, June 22, 2009

Annoying: Cancelled vs. Canceled

I'm deeply into my career and still don't have certainty about if the correct spelling is "cancelled" or "canceled". I could link to all the conflicting info, but won't.

Today I cancelled a meeting. And spell check rejected it. Checked numerous sources as I've done numerous times and kept as cancelled (not canceled) because it looks wrong the other way.

Spell check on this blog program didn't flag either spelling. Maybe they're both right?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I vote for canceled

Greg Melia, CAE said...

It has vexed me too on occasion. Looked it up on Dictionary.com ... apparently, both are options.

David M. Patt, CAE said...

Cancel is the root. Adding "ed" makes it canceled.

Shannon Aronin said...

I would go with cancelled. From what I can tell it's actually a US/UK thing, where cancelled is correct in the U.S. and canceled in the UK.

http://www3.telus.net/linguisticsissues/BritishCanadianAmerican.htm

http://www.antimoon.com/forum/t12462-60.htm

Sue Pelletier said...

Either is correct, but the cool kids just use one l.

Anonymous said...

I so agree with this, when will figure it out?? :)

the accidental novelist said...

I moved from the U.S. to Canada several years ago and am always confused now, because Canadians generally use the UK spellings, but not all of them. (they don't use tyre for tire for instance)

Canceled, modeled, labeled, traveled, signaled, dialed is generally how they spell them in the U.S.

Cancelled, modelled, labelled, travelled, signalled, dialled is generally how they spell them in Canada/UK.

This is the chart I usually refer to: http://www3.telus.net/linguisticsissues/BritishCanadianAmerican.htm

But to make things a little more confusing, according to this chart cancelled and travelled are also "okay" in the U.S., although labelled and signalled are not.

Anonymous said...

This doesn't explain "cancellation".

Lou007ct said...

Actually Shannon, Cancelled is correct in the UK and Canada, where as Cancelled or Canceled is correct in the US.

Anonymous said...

probably has something to do with the magic "e" as a vowel modifier?

A double consontant preceding an "e" usually kills its effect on a preceding vowel e.g. "filled" versus "filed".

From a purist perspective, "canceled" should be pronounced "canceeled" because of the single "l". However, as English is English, we have yet another exception.

Anonymous said...

only in America... are they too lazy to put the extra "L" ;)

Mee, the person said...

I agree it's annoying. I learned this as CANCELLED in school (in the US) and now apparently everyone in the US uses canceled. I have a hard time with modelled, travelled, etc., I learned them all with double ll.