35 commonplace words that PR pros misspell

This week, I set out to answer a simple question: What are the most difficult words to spell in the English language?

I quickly discovered that I should re-frame the question: What are the most difficult, commonly used words in the English language?

There are plenty of obscure, impossible-to-spell words. These are words used at national spelling bees, such as stichomythia or succedaneum. However, when was the last time you used “succedaneum” in a press release?

Below is a collection of commonplace words that people misspell the most, based on a consensus from online dictionaries (Oxford Dictionaries, Merriam-Webster and Wordnik), writing websites (Purdue Online Writing Lab and Plainlanguage.gov) and PR Daily articles:

  1. Accommodate
  2. Acquiesce
  3. Baccalaureate
  4. Bourgeois
  5. Calisthenics
  6. Camaraderie
  7. Carnivorous
  8. Collectible
  9. Copacetic
  10. Desiccate
  11. Dietitian
  12. Harebrained
  13. Handkerchief
  14. Indict
  15. Inoculate
  16. Iridescent
  17. Labyrinth
  18. Maneuver
  19. Memento
  20. Millennium
  21. Minuscule
  22. Occasionally
  23. Occurrence
  24. Omniscience
  25. Ophthalmologist
  26. Paraphernalia
  27. Perseverance
  28. Poinsettia
  29. Playwright
  30. Prerogative
  31. Reconnaissance
  32. Sacrilegious
  33. Segue
  34. Tawdry
  35. Unanimous


What other commonly used words have you often seen misspelled, PR Daily readers?

This post was first published on Ragan Communication’s PR Daily.


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