Saturday, 3 April 2021

Minuscule's last stand

The Daily Mash still spells it the traditional way:

I spotted the alternative spelling "miniscule" in a BBC article today, but I can't track it down again.

While trying to find it, I realised to my horror that the BBC have been spelling it "miniscule" since 2003.

I personally am not bothered whether we spell it the traditional way, based on its word stem "minu..." ('minute' as in 'very small', not 'minute' as in 'sixty seconds') or phonetically as "miniscule" but can we please make up our minds?


knirirr said...

FWIW the OED has "miniscule" as a variant spelling with the earliest occurrence in 1909:

1909 F. Miltoun Castles & Chateaux Old Burgundy ii. 45 The part played by the miniscule city [sc. Vezelay] itself has been no less important in more mundane matters.

decnine said...

'Miniscule' isn't a word that I use often, but it has never occurred to me to spell it any other way.

Mark Wadsworth said...

K, aha, thanks. I've learned something new today.

D, you too have learned something new today. But there's no point learning the old spelling any more, that's going to disappear into history.