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Spell Canadian, eh?

Canadians travelling to the land of our neighbours to the south (marked Terra Incognita on many maps) will find that the people in that distant and foreign land do not dwell in igloos. Moreover, their spelling differs from that employed in the True North. Examples include (correct spelling first):

I reversing the order of concluding "re."

centre, center

metre, meter (the unit, not the instrument)

theatre, theater

meagre, meager

sombre, somber

II removing the "u" from "ou" combinations

neighbour, neighbor

behaviour, behavior

colour, color

favour, favor

labour, labor

humour, humor

mould, mold

III changing the concluding "ize" to "ise"

(Canadians themselves are inconsistent on this one)

organize, organise

advertize, advertise

IV changing double letters to singletons

jewellery, jewelery

programme, program

V letters or combinations change to homymyms

cheque, check

Of course, the last letter of the alphabet is pronounced "zee" down there rather than "zed" as it should be.

Here is a small ABC listing that will serve to illustrate in more detail. Fuller listings with over 16000 entries can be found at the links below.

American British Canadian
-s- -c- -c-
-ize -ise -ise
-l- -ll- -ll-
-or -our -our
-er -re -re
-g -gue -gue
-yse -yze -yze
acknowledgment     acknowledgement     acknowledgment
aging ageing aging
alright all right all right
analyze analyse analyse
burned burnt burned
canceled cancelled cancelled
catalog catalogue catalogue
center, centered centre, centred centre, centred
check cheque cheque
civilization civilisation civilization
color colour colour
counselor counsellor counsellor
criticize criticise criticize
defense defence defence
donut doughnut doughnut
favor favour favour
fiber fibre fibre
flavor flavour flavour
fulfill fulfil fulfil
honor honour honour
jewelry jewellery jewellery
judgment judgement judgement
curb kerb curb
labor labour labour
license (n) licence (n) licence (n)
license (v) license (v) license (v)
liter litre litre
meter (unit) metre (unit) metre (unit)
mold mould mould
neighbor neighbour neighbour
offense offence offence
plow plough plough
practice(v) practise(v) practise(v)
pretense pretence pretence
program programme programme
pajamas pyjamas pyjamas
realize realise realise
savor savour savour
somber sombre sombre
specialty speciality speciality
theater theatre theatre
traveling travelling travelling
tire tyre tire

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Kevin's ABC list
Dave (VE7CNV)'s Canadian Dictionary
British-American Dictionary
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Updated 2023 11 22