17 Words That Even Really Smart People Misspell

Linguist Gretchen McCulloch recently asked her well-educated Twitter followers to reveal the words they routinely misspell. Below are several of their responses, along with Lifehacker’s tips for how to remember their proper spellings:

  1. rhythm: It’s an rh and th, each followed by one letter.
  2. judgment: No emotion in this judgment.
  3. bureaucracy: For beautiful I think of a cartoon character going “You are bee-eee-aaa-youuutiful!” In your head, pronounce the eau in bureaucrat the same way. Think of a beautiful bureaucrat.
  4. bourgeoisie: (adj. bourgeois) They drink bourbon around the world (geo), and…you’re on your own for isie.
  5. fuchsia: You would think the s goes first. But fuchsia funks you up.
  6. hierarchy: You’re higher (i-er) in the hierarchy.
  7. vacuum: See dirt once, scoop it twice.
  8. millennial: They want two of everything!
  9. business: It’s busy-ness. Or, you take the bus to a business.
  10. privilege: I don’t have a leg to stand on.
  11. nauseous: Picture a nautical seasick mouse.
  12. Nietzsche: You learn about him at zee school.
  13. Fibonacci: Math educator H. P. Read has a great trick: “The b, n, and c’s follow the start of the Fibonacci sequence 1, 1, 2.”
  14. dependence: It’s all e’s.
  15. resistance: Say it like you’re French.
  16. maintenance: The main room has 10 ants.
  17. harassment: One r and two ss’s, like “your a**.”

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