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Thread: British and American Spelling Differences

  1. #21
    aaah, we call them french-plaits or just plait (i don't know if I spelt it right, but it's pronounced "plats")

    Thanks for your help!

    Lola x

  2. #22
    Well, they're called braids here if they're small. Like, when people have many thin plaits in their hair, we say their hair is braided.


  3. #23

    battery -- cell

    Well from my experience with physics a cell is one battery and a battery is two, but that is only ever in physics when it is used, I think that's the same in both countries.

  4. #24
    Rhi for HP
    Here's one I figured out recently:

    jail/ jailer -- gaol/gaoler


    I'm curious: how do you Brits pronounce the latter? In America we say "jayler" that how you say it, too, despite the different spelling?

  5. #25
    Actually, we say prison in my area. But we would pronounce jailer "jayler". I've only ever heard the words goal/goaler used by my nan!

    Lola x

  6. #26
    A small one, that is so obscure it might easily pass under the radar is...



    Both in terms of the literal medical context, but also in terms of the pseudo-medical turn of phrase "adrenaline rush", which is used quite a lot. Adrenaline is so called because it is produced in the adrenal glands, which are by the kidneys ("Ad-"= beside, "Renal" = of the kidneys), I don't know why it should have changed name so extensively across the Atlantic.

    Why am I being so obscure? Because I was reading something on another website where an author criticised the use of the term "adrenaline rush" in a video game, suggesting in an extremely high and mighty manner that it should be "epinephrine rush". It wound me up. Let it never be said that I'm not a petty bar steward.

    On another note: measurements. When I was at school, we were taught that it was one "metre" and two "meters". *Shrugs*

  7. #27
    O.o We're supposed to use epinephrine? I've never used that word in my life except maybe in a science homework assignment back in high school. Maybe. I always use adrenaline. No one I know in the States around here uses epinephrine. It could just be in the south, since I'm from Texas, but yeah.

    And I don't know if this makes a difference with the jail/gaol thing, but jail and prison are two different things. If you commit a misdemeanor, you go to jail for a while, which would be a local jail that you might spend a few nights in for underage drinking or drunk driving or something, but a prison is a building all on its own were felons spend several months to years in. People spend the night in jail, but you wouldn't spend the night in prison--you'd be there for a while.

    ~ Lucia

  8. #28
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
    Kill the Spare
    Equinox Chick's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
    using rare and complicated words
    Can't find it now but someone posted that in Britain they don't put fullstops (periods- that's another one ) after abbreviated titles. We do- or should do- unless the grammar rules have changed.

    So we would say Mr. and Dr. etc.

    Other word differences are

    American British

    Jelly Jam

    Jello Jelly

    And I think I'm right in saying that in America you say 'berries' for soft fruit whereas we specify them (strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, blackcurrent etc.)

    Banner by the fabulous Julia - theoplaeye

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick
    And I think I'm right in saying that in America you say 'berries' for soft fruit whereas we specify them (strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, blackcurrent etc.)
    Actually, not sure whether that's just regional, but I'm usually a little more specific as to what berries I'm eating; I only say 'berries' when I eat a mix of, say, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, ecetera.

    Is that what you meant?

  10. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick

    Jelly Jam
    Actually, Jelly and Jam are diffrent things, so in America either could be said, most people just use jelly though.

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