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Receiving or recieving, siege or seige, etc.


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One of the most common errors among native English speakers as well as learners is the vowels "ie/ei" when used in certain words such as receive, siege, deceive, beige, perceive, achieve, etc.  I watched a local comedy show a long time ago where they made fun of the words "recieving area" in a signboard when it should actually mean as "receiving area." While it may be funny, these harmless errors are actually contributing to the slow but steady deterioration of the English language.  I always make it a point to at least correct any spelling errors first and foremost, and worry about grammar and correct usage afterwards.

How about you guys?  Did you encounter similar problems with these words?

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I agree with you and I have seen a lot of people making the same mistake. Ie and ei are too easy to not be noticed though unless you have a spelling check or somebody to point you the mistake.

When I'm typing I tend to spell the word with ie as well even though I know the spelling is wrong but it's just that my fingers are so used to going from ie instead of ei.

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  • 4 weeks later...

It is true that ei/ie is a common error made in the spelling of English words. When I was in school I was taught the rule and even so I still seldom make that error. The rule says that when the sound is e, ie should be used except in words that it follows after c,example receive. For any sound other than e in a word ei is usually used but there are also words that are still exceptional to that rule.

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  • 7 years later...
  • 2 months later...
On 8/26/2021 at 12:58 AM, cherie said:

The best rule I have been taught is, "i before e, except after c".  That works more often than not. At 71, I still recall learning that in grade school! Words like: deceive, receive, believe, retrieve, siege, and so on.  

I was also taught this and find it very helpful.

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