Endings beginning with vowels
The endings -able, -ion, -er, -or, -ance, -ence, -ous, -ish, and -al are generally used to form adjectives and nouns. Here are some guidelines about how they affect the spelling of the word to which they're added:
- When you're adding one of these endings to a word that ends with a consonant, the spelling is often straightforward:
- If you add one of the endings to a word that ends in an e that isn't pronounced, drop this final e:
- The exceptions to this rule are words that end with a ‘soft’ ce or ge sound:
- When you add one of these endings to verbs ending in a vowel plus l, you need to double the l:
- Double the final consonant when adding these endings to verbs that end with a single vowel plus a consonant, when the stress is at the end of the verb:
- Don't double the final consonant, if the word ends with a single vowel plus a consonant, and the stress is not at the end of the word:
- If the word only has one syllable and ends with a single vowel plus a consonant, double the final consonant:
- Don't double the final consonant if the verb ends with two vowels plus a consonant:
- In British English, when you add the endings -ous, -ious, -ary, -ation, -ific, -ize, and -ise to a word which ends in -our, you need to change the -our to -orbefore adding the ending:
- But when you are adding other endings, the -our spelling stays the same:
Nouns ending in -er, -or, and -ar
Learn the difference between nouns ending in –er, –or, and –ar, from caller and cooker to collar and cellar, via captor and calculator.
Verbs ending in -ize, -ise, -yze, and -yse
Don’t know what’s right when you lay eyes on a word that ends in -ize, -ise, -yse, or -yze? Our video and guide will help you see what the difference truly is.
Words ending in -able or –ible
It can be tricky to remember which words end in –able and which end in –ible: here are some tips, along with some commonly encountered examples.
Words ending in –ance and –ence
It can prove difficult to remember which words end in –ance and which in –ence: here are some tips, along with some commonly encountered examples.
Words ending in -ancy and -ency
It can be tricky to remember which words end in –ancy and which in –ency: these tips should help, along with some frequently seen examples.
Words ending in -ant and -ent
Permanent or permanant? Assistant or assistent? Here is a selection of everyday words ending in –ant or –ent: make sure you know the correct spellings.
Words ending in -ary, -ory, and -ery
It’s not always easy to recall whether a word ends in –ary, -ory, -ery: here are some tips that will help you remember the correct spellings.
Words ending in -efy and -ify
Liquify or liquefy? Exemplify or exemplefy? If you find words ending in –efy or –ify sometimes stupefy you, this page will help demystify the issue.
Words ending in -ence/-ense
Words ending in either –ence or –ense can get confusing, particularly if you are moving back and forth between British and American English.
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