Wordle: Susie Dent discusses popular new online word game
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Have you played today’s Wordle yet? As we’ve seen happen in the past, an American spelling for today’s word has British players taking to Twitter to vent their frustration at not being able to guess the five-letter word. What are the most common American words to watch out for on Wordle?
Wordle began when creator Josh Wardle wanted to make a word puzzle for his partner during lockdown, but now millions of players log on daily to guess the six-letter word and share their scores on social media.
The creator himself said: “The game has grown bigger than I ever imagined (which I suppose isn’t that much of a feat given I made the game for an audience of one).”
However, because Wordle is an American game, recently sold to the New York Times for a seven-figure sum, the US English spellings of some words can trip up British gamers.
Because of subtle differences between American and English spellings for common five-letter words – such as Britons using ‘OU’ instead of ‘O’ in some words – British players can feel cheated by the solution.
So, these are some of the most common American spellings of five-letter words (some of which may be six-letter words, according to British spelling) to watch out for.
Warning: this article contains spoilers for the Wordle puzzle of the day for February 9, 2022!
The most common spelling difference that pops up in many English five-letter words, is Americans tend to substitute an ‘OU’ for a single ‘O’.
In British English you tend to see OU more often due to a French influence, whereas American spellings are closer to the original Latin ending of -OR.
Common five-letter words with this difference include:
RUMOR – such as the rumour going around on Twitter today that many British players are peeved at an American spelling.
FAVOR – like the favour we are doing you by alerting you to Wordle’s US spellings.
FAVOR was the answer to Wordle on January 13, causing uproar amongst British Wordlers.
COLOR – like the green colour your tiles will all turn if you follow tips from Express.co.uk.
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ARMOR – such as the protective armour these tips will give you against losing your streak.
HONOR – like the honour of guessing the daily Wordle faster than your friends and followers.
LABOR – scratching your head trying to solve the Wordle of the day is certainly hard labour.
HUMOR – but you won’t have much of a sense of humour when you can’t guess today’s Wordle thanks to a US spelling.
Another common difference between US and UK spellings is words ending in ‘RE’ in British, which sometimes change to ‘ER’ for American spellers.
For British people, this is another French influence on our language, whereas Americans using the harsher ‘ER’ sound tends to better reflect pronunciation.
LITER – if a British player guessed LITRE they would have all the right letters in the wrong order.
FIBER – famed for keeping you regular, if this pops up in your daily Wordle you might be caught off guard by the spelling.
And, some words are just simplified in US English compared to British English, such as DOUGHNUT – an eight-letter word for Britons – becoming DONUT – an American five-letter possible Wordle solution.
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