Saturday, April 20, 2013

volumn/volume: Common Errors in English Usage Entry for Saturday, April 20, 2013

There are a few unusual words in English ending in MN in which the N is silent, such as “hymn” and “column,” but “volume” is not one of them.


  1. The archaic spelling of "volumn" (referring to a book or a series of periodicals) is derived from the same root as the current word "volume," which originally referred to a measure of space. That common root was the Latin "volumen" which includes both the e and the n.

    Over time, the more-familiar spelling (we know of many, many more words ending with "" than "") was used for both meanings. At first, of course, the use of "volume" for a publication was an error perpetrated by people of limited education, but time and usage have a way of making vocabulary evolve.

  2. Ok, I can't tell if my last comment went through, so I hope this is not a duplicate...

    .. but, I said... thank you qajaq for that insight. I've search Google for the answer to this riddle more than once without much luck. I knew for sure that I had more than teacher who used the "volumn" form. Thanks Again.

  3. I agree. A common mistake by myself too. And I'm sure I had to write it out 6 times that way in primary school - albeit the 1970's