Which Contains Far Too Many Confusions...

Hallie O'Donovan hallieod at indigo.ie
Sat Mar 24 10:39:20 EST 2001

There seems to be a thread running through all the threads, for me at 
least, of things which made/make me wonder!

1.  Thank you to Paul for explaining IGMC!

2. The ise/ize thing had me very confused indeed previously.  Though 
everyone said that "ize" endings were American and "ise" British (& 
and former colonies thereof except for the US of course), something 
wasn't fitting in with this.  My C.O.D. (1934, and how much more 
British can you get?), gives "realize" as the standard spelling, and 
our course books (Open University, and how much... etc.) give 
"focalize", which my spell checker kept wanting to change to 
"focalise".  So thanks to Ania & prof!

3.  Slightly less heartfelt thanks for correcting my identification 
of Marmite with Bovril.  In other words, I was wrong, and freely 
admit it, but there's still little chance that I'm going to rush out 
and buy a jar of Marmite now that I know it's vegetarian.  (I have 
smelled it!)  :)

4.  The Mrs. vs. Mrs question is still a mystery to me.  I had 
assumed that I'd picked up Mrs. from reading so much Jane Austen, and 
a fair amount of Dickens also, but now hear that the one with the 
full stop is also American.  Sorry, that'd be the one with the 
"period" is American. ;)  At least I think it would...

5.  Finally - the jelly/jam thing.  I have a vague feeling that 
people in the US do make less of a distinction between jelly and jam 
than they do in Ireland and England, as Kyla said (although maybe 
Bill's slant came from some British roots?).  But just for fun I 
looked up jelly in my dictionary, and the definition's a real winner: 
"Soft stiff semi-transparent food, consisting chiefly of gelatin, got 
from skin, bones &c, by boiling and cooling."  Doesn't that just make 
you want to gobble some down?  Yum.  Jam on the other hand is a 
conserve of fruit, made by boiling it with sugar.  Phew.


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