cute accent #4: reoccurance
Wendy: How do you spell reoccur?
American: recur (giggles) re-OH-kerr, with an o, is that an English version?
I can spell occurance. If I need a second occurance I may be cornered into attempting a spelling of re-occur, reoccur, if it just keeps on happening I have to remember to drop an o and a c to let it recur. It’s all too complicated… …I wonder why, I failed to find any evolutionary descriptions of these words.
Kenneth Wilson’s guide to American English (1993) cited on Bartleby.com gives advice that I can understand and follow:
The usual Standard words are recur, meaning â€œto return (to),â€ â€œto come back (to),â€ â€œto occur again,â€ as in The trouble recurred last week for the dozenth time; recurrence, meaning â€œone of several repetitions, yet another return,â€ as in If thereâ€™s another recurrence, we must take action; and the related adjective recurrent. Reoccur and reoccurrence are said to differ from recur and recurrence in that they suggest a first or single repetition: That odd noise reoccurred an hour later. They are rare in Edited English, and most desk dictionaries donâ€™t include them, but they appear fairly often in the speech of the inexperienced as synonyms for recur and recurrence: That odd noise reoccurred just after youâ€™d left. Its reoccurrence made me nervous. Especially in writing, best practical advice is to stick with recur and recurrence, for one repetition or many.