For centuries, people wrote with pens and pencils; when they made a spelling mistake, they reached for an eraser to make a correction. After typewriters were introduced in the mid-1800s, typists reached for a bottle of Wite-Out to correct the dreaded typo (short for typographical error). Today, in the digital world, spellchecking programs make corrections on the fly — words are instantly corrected as they are being typed, preventing egregious, and sometimes embarrassing, spelling mistakes.
Although technology has changed dramatically over the centuries — one thing has remained unchanged: people still make boneheaded spelling mistakes. The spellchecker is a double-edge sword: although it functions relatively well to correct typos (but not grammatical errors), it leads to a rather lackadaisical attitude toward spelling, which is a polite way of saying people are lazy about spelling a word correctly or they simply don’t care. Thus the proliferation of smart devices has paradoxically led to the dumbing down of writing.
So what is the most frequently misspelled word in the English language? Thanks to a poll by the researchers at OnePoll.com, bad spellers can be on the alert for the top ten misspelled words in English (correct spelling followed by most common misspelling):
1. Definitely – Definately
2. Sacrilegious – Sacreligious
3. Indict – Indite
4. Maneuver (USA), Manoeuvre (GB) – Maneouvre
5. Bureaucracy – Beaurocracy
6. Broccoli – Brocolli
7. Phlegm – Phleghm
8. Prejudice – Predjudice
9. Consensus – Conscensus
10.Unnecessary – Unecessary
For further reading: dailyrecord.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/definately-the-most-misspelled-word-in-the-english-1027403