'Kompromis speling': a fonetik kompromis for the simpler speling of English.

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The dubl bluf of 'Euro-English'.

English speling kauses many milions of pepl much trubl. Pajes on this sIt's sekond index get simpler speling than the saim pajes, in mor traditional speling, link'd to my 'Democracy Science' hom paj. Som ryders may wish to kompar a web paj, in the tw diferent speling versions.
On the simpler spelt pages, longer quotations, naims of pepl and plases, ar usualy in ther orijinal speling.

The simpler rules, of 'Kompromis Speling', ar not as radikal as my ESP alfabet. In 1999, I sujested, on that paj, that the European Komision regularis the fonetiks of the Roman alfabet. In 2002, a hox went round the web that so-kal'd Euro-English speling has byn regularis'd with the agryment of the British government. The sting, to the jouk, was that, as wel as sensibl speling reforms, 'aksent reforms' wud mak English spoken with a staij-German aksent.

Som British pepl hav byn taken-in by 'Euro-English' reforms. As pepl rylIs they hav byn fwl'd, they wil think ther is no such thing as Euro-English. In that kais, they wil fal for a dubl bluf. ( This was the expresion of a frend, wen I told her this amusing story. )

'Euro-English' is an ironik naim given to the simplifying of English gramar and speling, by the multi-lingual membership of the European Union. ( My ESP alfabet paj inkluds a proposal for English in the past tens without nyding iregular verbs. ) Euro-English has bekom an objekt of akademik study. A similar asimilation of English hapen'd in the kultural melting pot of imigration to the United States. Way bak in Anglo-Saxon England, a lIk proses kreated erly English.

It dosnt mater tu much that English vowels ar not spelt much in lIn with spych. Vowels ar les definit sounds than konsonants, and they shift any-way. Britain has a north-south spych divid, resulting from a vowel shift from traditional spych.

Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion, mayd into the musikal My Fair Lady, has Cockney 'dragl-tail'd guter-snIp' Eliza Doolittle unfairly talk her way into hI sosiety, after she has taken elokution lesons from the fonetician Henry Higgins. He asks her to say: 'The rain in Spain fals mainly on the plain.' Ignoring the play's komik exajeration of her aksent, Eliza's Cockney dos repyt the 'ai' dipthong in the words, as they ar spelt. She is fonetikly korekt. Then the 'fonetician' Higgins 'korekts' her by making her yus the 'ei' dipthong insted.
I tend to folow Eliza in this mater.
Cockneys or Australians hav a drawl that may pronouns a word lIk 'rain' as its dipthong ai is spelt. So, ther is no point in re-speling 'rain', tho its mor standard pronunsiation is 'rein'. Also, 'rein', spelt as it sounds, alredy is the konventional speling for an other word.

The word 'quantum', for instans, is usualy pronouns'd by English spykers with an o-sound. But it sounds mor lIk its 'a' speling, from som Amerikans hw drawl ther spych.

The 'Kompromis speling' reforms do not transkrib standard English. It yus'd to be thot of as BBC English but is now som sort of Amerikan English, if it exists at al. Spoken English is now just so many over-laping dialekts. No uon kan klaim pre-eminens: sertainly not the BBC, wich now sensibly kultivats aksents from al over the United Kingdom.

The point is that English is spoken al over the world under any number of vowel variations. The konsonants ar the main ankor of spych. Orijinaly, only konsonants wer yus'd to rIt down spych. Making the speling of English konsonants konsistent is fairly strait-forward, tho quIt a program of reforms is involv'd.

A biger problem is redusing the speling of English dipthongs from kaos to a limited number of rysonably fonetik digrafs, that konform, as much as posibl to konventional English speling.

This stil lyvs alternativs for speling the saim dipthong. The remaining konfusion, this kan kaus, is off-set by the posibility of distinguishing tw words that sound the saim but hav diferent mynings. An exampl is 'two' and 'too'. Ther simplify'd spelings kud be render'd 'tw' and 'tu' respektivly.

Ther is a myningful chois betwyn dipthong endings -i and -y, as in 'mayd' for 'made', rather than speling 'maid', which alredy myns som-thing els.
LIkwIs, -u or -w endings alows speling 'rowt' for 'wrote', insted of speling 'rout', wich alredy myns som-thing els.

It is fair to say konventional English speling also yuses many mor konfusing, alternativ spelings to myn diferent things for words wich sound the saim.
Tho I often folow such semantik speling distinktions, I dont belyv they shud be preskrib'd, to further burden the memory. The kontext of the word in the sentens is often enuf to mak obvius wich myning aplIs.

On breaking my own rules.

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TrIing tu rijidly to standardis vowel and especialy dipthong spelings, on fonetik prinsipls, is lIk bilding a hous on sand. Vowel and especialy dipthong pronunsiations shift wildly over tIm and plas. So, I som-tIms refrain from giving komon words a mor fonetik speling, bekaus it mIt lwk tu unfamiliar to the ryder.

For exampl, uon may nok the e off 'rule' for 'rul', rather than spel 'rwl', wich is mor striktly akurat in my system...
Noking the 'e' off words lIk 'derive' or 'provide' to mak 'deriv' or 'provid', relats to ther pronunsiation in other parts of spych, such as 'derivative' and 'provident'.

Konventional speling often does not distinguish dipthongs from vowels in words of mor than uon sylabl: for instans, 'save' bekoms 'saving', droping the e that marks-out a dipthong from a vowel.
The Kompromis speling versions are 'saiv' and 'saving'.
Shortening to 'wav' for 'wave', does not confuse with 'waive' ( re-spelt 'waiv' ).

Other reduktions, of a dipthong to a vowel, inklud speling ( after a Glasgow aksent ) 'thot' for 'thought', 'sot' for 'sought', 'bot' for 'bought'...

Folowing northern English dialekt shortens 'make' to 'mak' and 'take' to 'tak'. Also thinking of this dialekt, one need not chanj the speling of 'by' or 'my', as not rIming with 'I', but said as 'be' and 'me' ar usualy pronouns'd.
Not re-spelt are words lIk 'be' and 'me' bekaus they do not go out-sId the ruls for representing the English fonyms fonetikly-- even tho they yus the rong rul, fonetikly spyking. The word 'bee', pronouns'd the saim way as 'be', dos brek the ruls: ther is no such English fonym as 'ee'. So 'bee' re-spels akording to my system, as 'by', despIt a posibl konfusion of myning, wich kan not always be avoided.

TrIing to avoid greit konfusions has let in smal konfusions, unfortunatly. To get rid of the yus of 'ee', I'v substituted 'y'. Hens, a word lIk 'free', wich rIms with 'glory', in the Elgar march ( yus'd as the English anthem in the 2002 Komon-welth gaims ) is re-spelt 'fry'.
But konventional speling alredy has a word 'fry', rIming with 'I', wich is re-spelt 'frI'.

Vowel spelings ar chanj'd as litl as posibl. But a word lIk: 'lane' is re-spelt 'lein' rather than 'lain', wich alredy has a myning. The word 'raise' shortens to 'rais', so 'race' is render'd 'reis', tho 'racing' might simply be re-spelt 'rasing'.
Les esential, perhaps, 'hate' may be spelt 'heit' insted of 'hait', wich sounds lIk 'hight'; 'later' re-spels as 'leiter' and 'latter' re-spels as 'later'.

Words lIk: share, fare, spare, rare, care,.. ar re-spelt in mor fonetik form: sher, fer, sper, rer, ker,..Simply noking-off the e wud hav konfused with other ( rysonably fonetikly spelt ) words, lIk: far, spar, car,..
This is not don in every instans: the e is nok'd off 'compare', for 'kompar', bering in mind words lIk 'par' and 'comparison'.

In short, I hav often found it prudent to brek my own vowel and dipthong speling ruls, houpfuly in fairly minor ways, that ar justify'd, on the houl, by a much simpler English speling system.
I hav tr'd to mak my re-spelings as konsistent, as such a kompromis with konventional speling kan houp to be. I dont want to chanj my mind about 'Kompromis Speling' tu much tu swn. But som of my re-spelings, lIk som just given, ar not komfortabl kompromises. Other pepl may mak mor akeptabl chanjes and mor progres. Usualy, I am kaut betwyn the most rysonabl speling, in terms of my simplify'd system, and the best kompromis with konventional speling.
Lastly, lIk every other rIter of English, I mak speling mistaks, on my ( fairly ) konventionly spelt web pajes, to say nothing of the pajes in reform'd speling!
To konventional spelers of English, a speling mistak is a disgrais. The Nw British Library 'blush'd with shaim' for speling 'heritage' with thry e's! That atitud belongs to an unquestioning aij of authority. The purpos, hyr, is to aproch a mor sensibl speling to mak English literasy availabl to al.That is why I'v explain'd my speling reforms on this paj ( as wel as diskus'd the posibility of an ESP alfabet on an other web paj ).
Alternativ pajes in simpler speling, on the world wId web, may promot wIder understanding.

Awkward words for reformers of speling:

A fw exampls may show the snags to reforming English speling. Tak the word 'area'. The 'ea' is not pronouns'd as a dipthong but tw separat vowels. A fonetik rendering, lIk 'eria', wud be bafling. Wer-as, the speling, 'area' is not tu far from how the word is spoken. So, I hav not chanj'd 'area'.

Similarly, with the word 'reality'. But 'real' is not pronouns'd as the Spanish say 'Real Madrid'. So, I'v chanj'd 'real' to 'ryl'. 'Realise' is mayd 'rylIs'.

The word 'idea' is tryted lIk 'area', bekaus a mor fonetik speling wud mak it tu unfamiliar. In fakt the 'ea' in 'idea' is usualy pronouns'd as a dipthong. Standard English dos not hav an 'ea' dipthong, so the 'ea' digraf is uon of several, tabl'd below, for abolition from English speling.
The dipthong that maks the word 'ear' is render'd 'ir', as distinkt from 'er' for 'err'. But 'fear', for exampl, is re-spelt 'fyr' to avoid konfusion with 'fir'.

Kompromis Speling abolishes the oa digraf, except in a word like 'boa', which is 2 fonetik vowels, rather than 1 unfonetik dipthong.

Now and again, a regularis'd word defIs any semblans to its konventional speling. Tak the harmles-lwking litl word 'phase'. Digraf 'ph' is replas'd by 'f'. The 'e' works lIk an aksent myning that 'a' dos not stand for the vowel 'a' itself but a dipthong, hws fonetik valu is 'ei'. If yu ar a Cockney or Aussie yu mIt be forgiven for pronounsing the dipthong as 'ai'. And 'fais' is kloser to the konventional speling than 'feis'.
Ther is a further problem. We hav not distinguish'd the fonetik speling of 'phase' from that for 'face'. Striktly spyking, 'phase' is pronouns'd 'feiz'. I had to resort to this proper fonetik speling bekaus ther was nothing, or tu litl, regularity in the konventional speling to gId the ryder as to the word ment. In this kais, I departed from the mor typikal English praktis of speling 's' for the 'z' sound.

Sumary of speling reforms.

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Extra leter I and extra purpos of w and y.

Leter 'w' literaly is 'dubl-u'.

Leter w replases the oo digraf. So, 'room' spels as 'rwm', distinkt from 'rum'.
Ther ar exeptions: 'stood' bekoms 'stud' ( wich alredy has diferent mynings, not to be konfus'd ), 'foot' bekoms 'fut', 'good' bekoms 'gud'.

The e is jeneraly remov'd from the ew and ue digrafs: 'new' to 'nw', 'few' to 'fw', and 'dew' to 'dw', 'due' to 'du', 'true' to 'tru'.
Traditional English usualy pronounses both ew and ue lIk the yu or yw sound. That is lIk the words 'you' and 'yew', wich dont nyd ther midl leters. Amerikan pronunsiation usualy drops the y ( or i ) sound, obskuring the diferens betwyn 'do' and 'due'.
Notis: yus ( use ) as distinkt from 'us'. And 'byuty' ( beauty ) as distinkt from 'bwty' ( booty ). I may spel the English pronunsiation for such semantik distinktions.

Leter 'y' as 'dubl-i'

Leter 'y' as 'dubl-i', analjusly to 'dubl-u', jeneraly replases 'ee' or 'ea'. So, 'meet' or 'meat' spels as 'myt', distinkt from 'met'. Nout: 'ysy' for 'easy', 'ych' for 'each' ( but 'yer' for 'year' avoids 'yyr', and som pepl do say: 'yer' ).

Words, such as 'brief', 'chief', ar re-spelt with y: 'bryf', 'chyf'. Nout: 'yild' for 'yield' ( to avoid 'yyld' ). The ie digraf is abolish'd, inkluding its yus to replas the y ending of words in ther plural form. Thus, 'stories' bekoms 'storys'.

New leter 'I' as in 'I, myself'.

'I' spels the dipthong that signifys the personal pronoun. So, 'ride' spels as 'rId', distinkt from 'rid'.
This reform also holds for just about al uon-sylabl words spelt with an i modify'd by an e on the end, such as: bIk ( bike ), lIk ( like ), lI ( lie ).
This also holds for other-wIs uon-sylabl words wen in a part of spych, or with a prefix, that maks them of mor than uon sylabl, such as: lIking, sufIs ( suffice ), desId ( decide ).

Nout: fonts such as Arial ( yus'd on my pajes in konventional speling ) don't distinguish betwyn leter 'l' and kapital-i or 'I', tho yu kan sy the diferens by lwking at the web paj's sors.
A quiker alternativ is to yus the number uon, '1', wich avoids the nyd for the ky shift to kapital-i.

Uon-sylabl words ending in y ar pronouns'd as in aisle or I. This myns that speling 'flies' as 'flys' konfuses with 'fleas' or 'flees'. For klarity 'flies' kud be render'd 'flIs'.
This exeptional pronunsiation also apyrs in tw-sylabl words that ar esentialy uon-sylabl words plus a prefix, for exampl: deny ( de-ny ), rely ( re-ly ), bely -- or belie -- ( be-ly ), defy ( de-fy ). Such spelings may also be kary'd into thry-sylabl words, such as from 'defy' to 'defying' -- re-spelt 'defI' and 'defIing'.
The sufix '-fy', pronouns'd '-fI', as in 'modify', 'sanctify', does not need to be changed to a '-fI' spelling, on such thry-sylabl words, bekaus the words ment ar klyr enuf.

Redundant leters omited:

No repyted leters, with the inesential exeption of 'off', as distinkt from 'of'. 'Off' kan be spelt lIk 'of' without konfusion wen hyfen'd to a verb, as in 'ward-of'.
Okasionly a repyted leter is merited by a repyted sound, as in 'kontinuum' ( continuum ), kontinuus ( continuous ).

Silent leters ar left out, notably gh: 'weigh' bekoms 'wei'; the h is remov'd if just that leter is silent: 'ghost' re-spels as 'gost'.
The word 'who' is now 'hw'.
Past tens ending ed is now 'd wen the e is not sounded: rained now rain'd.

Konsonants mayd mor konsistent:

No chanj in the speling of the folowing konsonants: b, d, f, h, j, k, l, m, n, p, r, s, t, v, z.

No removing, at this staij, the leter q wich replases k befor u ; 'queue' kan be spelt 'qu' ( or 'kw' ). Words ending in -ique kan be spelt -yk insted: 'technique' now 'teknyk'.
No removing, yet, the leter x, wich stands for ks.

Leter g never spelt for j sounds ( German, how-ever, dos pronouns, for exampl, 'general' with a g sound. )

Leter c is never spelt for k, as in 'come', or s, as in 'civil'. But c retain'd in words lIk 'social' or 'ocean'. That is c = sh. But the sh digraf not replas'd by c yet.
The od word 'sure' is re-spelt 'shur'; 'machine' is re-spelt 'macyn'.

The ch digraf equals tc but not replas'd, at this stayj. Eventualy, words such as 'church' kud be spelt 'tcurtc' and words such as 'hitch' spelt 'hitc'.
Digraf ch is replas'd by k when that is how it is pronouns'd: 'mechanic' is re-spelt 'mekanik'.

Digraf th not chanj'd yet.

The folowing digrafs ar replas'd or remov'd: dg for j : 'judge' now 'juj'.

Leter f replases ph or gh : 'photograph' is now 'fotograf'; 'rough' now 'ruf'.

Digraf wh is replas'd by w : 'which' now 'wich'.

Removing the most unfonetik ruls for English dipthongs:

This reform removs al the spelings that stik an e on the end of a word, to aksent the word's presyding vowel as a dipthong. ( This was the mak-shift William Caxton had to employ for the first English printing pres. ) Other vowel-leter kombinations that dont match the standard English dipthongs, such as oa and ea also hav the sekond leter remov'd, or ar re-spel'd to avoid konfusion with existing words ( Sy the tw vowel tabls below ).
The ew dipthong has the first leter remov'd.

Tabl 1: Replasing Caxton's and other unfonetik vowel digrafs in English.
e aksent for
Exampl: Sujested
Exampl: Sujested
a e ate ait
e e free fry ea eat yt
i e fry
site / sight
o e toe tou ( distinkt
from tow )
oa load lowd ( distinkt
from 'loud' )
u e due du oo

Tabl 2: Fonetik English digrafs that ar also konventional English spelings, wich may not be understud fonetikly.
-i / -y
-u / -w
ai / ay / I Australian / Cockney:
rain Spain mainly plain
may play
spIn ( spine ), mIn ( mine )
au / aw tau, aural
ei / ey vein / fey
dubl-i = y story / storey
relyv = relieve
yu / yw yu = you
yw = yew
oi / oy toil / toy o / ou / ow so / soul
/ sow
wi wi' / with dubl-u = w
insted of ew
or oo
two / too = tw / tu
thrw = threw /
thru = through

The dipthongs, with sekond vowel unstres'd, tradition spels with an r, wer it may no longer be sounded, in som dialekts: ar ( are ), er ( air, there ), ir ( ear ), or ( or ), ur ( sure ).

Richard Lung.

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