Vigour, vigor and vigorous
‘Vigour’ means physical strength and general good health, or effort and enthusiasm (see Oxford Dictionaries).
In the UK it is spelt ‘vigour’ and in the US it is spelt ‘vigor’.
The UK spelling of ‘vigour’ leads to the common mistake of spelling ‘vigorous’ with a ‘u’, as in ‘vigourous’. This is wrong, both in the UK and America. You’ll see ‘vigourous’ quite often. Here are just a few examples from a couple of organisations that should know better:
“…and I certainly wouldn’t welcome a widescreen telly or a vigourous game of Scrabble…” (the Guardian)
“The recipe was invented at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York. Vigourous shaking is recommended before the thick, sweet liquid can be strained…” (the Guardian)
“Since then vigourous growth in dental services has led to improved access for patients.” (BBC News website)
Wrong, wrong and wrong. The word, as Oxford Dictionaries will confirm, is ‘vigorous‘.
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