- Although the sound of a word can often help you to spell it correctly, the spellings of many English words are difficult to remember because the spellings reflect pronunciations from other languages. For example, in Middle English, the consonant b in subtle was sounded. Modern English drops the sound but keeps the spelling.
- Some of the most difficult words to spell contain unpronounced vowels. These silent vowels may also reflect patterns of other languages. For example, vague and
other -gue words come from French.