Please, Don't Spell "Disdain" as "Distain"!
by Tina Blue
March 13, 2006
For a long time I kept thinking it was just a typo, that people really knew better. But I have seen the word disdain misspelled as distain so often, so very, very often, that I am now convinced that many people really don't know that distain is embarrassingly wrong.
Oh, sure, when pronounced, the d between the s and the a does lose its vocalization and end up sounding like a t. But, hey, if you say washed out loud, that d also ends up sounding like t--but I don't see people spelling the word washt all over the place.
Nor do I see wisht, disht, crasht, masht, perisht, cherisht, harasst, amasst, sasst, tosst, or any other such spelling for occasions when d sounds like t when spoken aloud.
But just today, I saw distain seven times before 9:00 a.m., and today was entirely typical. I must see that misspelling at least twenty times a week--if not more! In fact, it is so common on the Net that I suspect the Net is precisely what is helping to spread and reinforce it.
So if you are one of those people who keep spelling disdain as distain, please stop doing that. You aren't just misspelling the word yourself; you are also teaching other people to misspell it.