This is part of the dif­fer­ence between series.

I’ve heard some peo­ple con­fus­ing the words spelled and spelt. Here’s the dif­fer­ence between the two.


Spelled is the past tense of to spell.

  • He spelled the word wrong in his essay.
  • Trav­elled is spelled with two L’s in Cana­da.


Spelt, on the oth­er hand, refers to a type of grain that has been grown in parts of Europe for over 7,000 years.

  • This multi­grain bread con­tains spelt flour.

Now, keep in mind that this dif­fer­ence is pri­mar­i­ly Amer­i­can (and pret­ty much the same for Cana­di­ans, too). Out­side the US, spelt is an alter­nate spelling of spelled, a past tense form of to spell. So, if you’re in the US (or Cana­da), stick with spelt for the grain only.

Which words do you con­fuse? Let me know in the com­ments below.

Inter­est­ed in more gram­mar tips like this? Sign up for our free month­ly newslet­ter.

About Kim Siever

I am a copy­writer and copy­ed­i­tor. I blog on writ­ing and social media tips most­ly, but I some­times throw in my thoughts about run­ning a small busi­ness. Fol­low me on Twit­ter at @hotpepper.

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