Should “glamourous” be considered incorrect?

The Wiktionary entry for glamourous, for what it’s worth, claims that it is “a common British spelling”, but many native English speakers dismiss it as incorrect. Some, though, draw a distinction between “glamorous” and “glamourous”, saying that the latter is a valid, British spelling.

What’s your take on this?


Edit in response to comments: as has been pointed out in the other answers, the spelling glamourous is included in the Oxford English Dictionary, which is why my answer doesn’t so much as address the question of whether it is considered wrong by everyone, but rather tries to quantify its popularity — or, as it turns out, the lack thereof.

Here are the usage stats from the British National Corpus (BNC) and the Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA):

              BNC   COCA
glamorous     562   2375
glamourous      9     22

So the spelling without the u is preferred on both sides of the pond, though the preference is marginally stronger in the US (99.1%) than in the UK (98.4%).

Here’s a breakdown by publication type:

                  ou/o  ratio (%)

MAGAZINE  (BNC)   4/114   3.5
NEWSPAPER (BNC)   3/109   2.8
MISC      (BNC)   2/113   1.8
FICTION   (COCA)  5/392   1.3
MAGAZINE  (COCA)  8/811   1.0
NEWSPAPER (COCA)  5/535   0.9
ACADEMIC  (COCA)  1/120   0.8
FICTION   (BNC)   0/142   0     
NON-ACAD  (BNC)   0/50    0     
ACADEMIC  (BNC)   0/17    0     

This means that relatively speaking, you are most likely to encounter the spelling glamourous in British magazines and newspapers, but seeing the absolute numbers you might consider yourself lucky if you encounter it at all.

So, both spellings are used — and in print, not just in YouTube comments —, but if you want to be on the safe side, glamorous is the way to go.

Source : Link , Question Author : dreamlike , Answer Author : RegDwigнt

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