Writing Tip Wednesday #18: The E’s Have It

Eiffel Tower Kimberly VardemanHave you ever wondered how to spell fiancé? fiancée? I didn’t learn the difference until I got married. And what about blonde? Or blond? I had to research that one for this post—I had no idea.

It all boils down to the same thing—the words are French, and they have gender. If you know Spanish, it’s like the difference between loca and loco.

“Fiancé” and “blond” are the masculine forms of the words. “Fiancée” and “blonde” are the feminine forms. The masculine forms can be used to refer to males and females, and the feminine forms refer only to females.

In American English, as a noun, “blond” is used for males and “blonde” is used for females. As an adjective, “blond” is most common, though you can add the “e” and use it to describe females.

Now you know.

(And in case it’s bugging you—Chicago style would not put an apostrophe in “E’s” in my title. I added it for clarity.)

Photo credit: Kimberly Vardeman via Flikr

4 thoughts on “Writing Tip Wednesday #18: The E’s Have It

  1. Kelley Welu

    AHH!! These words have been bothering me for quite some time! Thank you for the clarification! I’ve always been curious but apparently never curious enough to look further into it…. I enjoy your writing tip Wednesday’s! :)

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