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14.3 Spelling: Changes Before an Added Ending

For some words, double the final letter before adding an ending that begins with a vowel.
Finally it occurred to me that the taps and thuds of the water lapping the shore were making a bigger impression on our guest than we expected when we first opened the window.
Double the consonant before adding any ending that begins with a vowel when the last syllable of a word is accented and that syllable ends in a single vowel followed by a single consonant. In the sentence above,

  • occur is accented on its last syllable, and its last two letters are the single vowel, u and the single consonant, r. Therefore, the r is doubled before the -ed.
  • lap contains only one syllable, and it is therefore accented. The last two letters are a single vowel followed by a single consonant. Therefore the last consonant is doubled before the added ending.
  • big is the same as lap.
  • expect is accented on its last syllable, but its last two letters are two consonants in a row. Therefore, the last consonant isn't doubled before the -ed.
  • open is accented on its first syllable, so the last consonant isn't doubled.
  • tap, thud are each adding an ending (-s) that does not begin with a vowel, so the last consonant is not doubled.
Application 1     Application 2

On some nouns and verbs, add -e before a final -s. (See Chapter 11 for more work with final -s in general.)

Now that Carol goes to seventh grade, she insists on doing exactly what the other kids do, like packing her lunches in bags instead of boxes, even though the tomatoes in the sandwiches are more likely to get squashed. She claims that the other kids all carry radios to school, too, but I don't believe that.
Add -e along with any final -s when a word's natural ending is -s, -x, -sh, or -ch. In addition, this -es usually goes on a word ending in -o with a consonant right before it. In the sentences above:
  • lunch, sandwich both end in -ch, so they add -es.
  • box ends in -x, so it adds -es.
  • insist, bag, claim, kid each end in consonants that aren't on the list, so they simply add -s.
  • go, tomato both end in a consonant + -o, so they add -es.
  • radio ends in a vowel + -o, so it adds only -s.
Application 3     Application 4

For some words that end in -y, change the -y to -i before adding an ending.

After their weariness wore off, the talent show participants partied all night. They weren't worried about studying for the test on the short stories since the the exam period had been delayed.
Change the -y to -i before any added ending except -ing when the final -y comes right after a consonant. In the sentences above:
  • weary ends in a consonant + -y, so the -y changes to -i before the -ness.
  • party, worry each end in a consonant + -y, so the -y changes to -i before the -ed.
  • story ends in a consonant + -y, so the -y changes to -i. (Notice that a final -s becomes -es here.>
  • study ends in -y, but it is adding -ing, so the -y doesn't change.
  • delay ends in a vowel + -y, so the -y doesn't change.

Application 5     Application 6

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