Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Wondering Wilma

Dear Word Spy,

This is what I wonder about. I wonder why for "can not" we say "can't" and for "do not" we say "don't." So how come for "will not" we say "won't"? Why don't we say "willn't"?

From Wilma (that is my name it is not a joke.)

Dear Wilma,

You will be glad to hear that if you look in an old book, maybe about 100 years old, you will sometimes see the word “willn’t” for "will not" written, so some people have had the same idea as you!

But the answer to the “won’t” question is this. The word “will” actually used to be “woll”. Then “woll not” was shortened to “wonnot”. So this means "won't" is actually short for "wonnot".


wondering with you,

The Word Spy

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