Which Is Correct, Gray or Grey?

Which Is Correct, Gray or Grey?

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GRAY vagy GREY? Mi a különbség? Mikor melyik a helyes? Olvasd el, és kiderül! 

Do you know that colour you get when you mix black and white? How do you spell it? People seem to have trouble with it. However, if you were to look up a list of commonly misspelled words in the English language, you probably wouldn’t find “gray” or “grey” among them. The reason, of course, is simple: both spellings of the word are correct.

Gray is a word we can use as a noun, an adjective, and an adverb. As a noun, gray refers to any of the neutral colours between black and white.

If we were to use it in a sentence, we would say:

The wall was painted a light shade of gray. – A falat a szürke egy világos árnyalatára festették.

As an adjective, gray can be used to describe something that is of a gray colour. It can also be used to describe something that’s dull, joyless, or ambiguous:

The gray dog was walking down the street. – A szürke kutya lefelé sétált az utcán.

Paula was having a gray day. – Paula napja unalmas, szürke volt.

The business operated in a legal gray area. – A vállalkozás jogilag le nem szabályozott területen működött.

We use gray as a verb when we want to say that something is becoming gray. Because gray hair is usually associated with aging, we sometimes mention it as a way to show that someone is getting older:

John’s hair started to gray long before he retired. – John már jóval a nyugdíjba vonulása előtt őszülni kezdett.

Both gray and grey come from the Old English word grǽg. Over time, many different spellings of the word developed. The Middle English poem “The Owl and the Nightingale,” which was written in the twelfth or thirteenth century, uses the spelling “greie.” The fourteenth-century translation of the French poem “Roman de la Rose” uses the spelling “greye.” “Graye” can be found in the poem “Piers Plowman” written by William Langland in the second half of the fourteenth century. Examples of the spellings we use today can also be found in Middle English literature.

By the eighteenth century, “grey” had become the more common spelling, even though the legendary lexicographer Samuel Johnson thought that “gray” was a better version. In the nineteenth century, English dictionaries followed Johnson’s cue and prescribed “gray” as the correct version, but to no avail. By the twentieth century, “grey” had become the accepted spelling everywhere except in the United States.

And that’s how things stand today: “gray” is the preferred spelling in the United States, while “grey” is used everywhere else. So, if you’re American, you’ll write “gray,” and if you’re English, you’ll write “grey.” You can see the difference if you closely observe British and American media:

BBC: At the time, he was wearing a grey suit jacket, dark trousers, a light blue shirt and blue tie. – Akkoriban szürke zakót, sötét nadrágot, világoskék inget és kék nyakkendőt hordott.

Huffington Post: Gray Hair. It will arrive for most of us at some point in our lives. – Ősz haj. Legtöbb ember meg fogja tapasztalni élete egy bizonyos pontján.

While you could probably use “grey” in the US and “gray” in the UK with no problems, the two are not always interchangeable. With proper nouns, the spelling isn’t flexible. Grey’s Anatomy is a TV show about a character named Meredith Grey. Gray’s Anatomy is an influential anatomy handbook written by Henry Gray. Greyhound is a breed of dog, and it’s always spelled with an “e.” One gray is a unit that’s used to measure the amount of ionizing radiation absorbed per kilogram of matter.

But in all other cases, remember: E is for England, A is for America.

There are a lot of idioms and expressions in English with “grey”. Can you fill in the gaps in the expressions given?

1. grey ...... = újrafelhasznált víz, pl. fürdővíz öntözésre

2. grey...... = angol agár

3. grey ...... = szürke eminenciás

4. grey ...... = borongós hangulat

5. grey ...... = szürkeállomány

6. to give someone grey ...... = megpróbálni valaki türelmét

7. to ...... grey = megőszülni

8. the grey ...... = idős emberek voksai pl. egy szavazásban

9. a grey...... = idős ember

10. grey ...... = ferencesrendi szerzetes

 

Key

1. water

2. hound

3. cardinal

4. mood

5. matter

6. hairs

7. turn

8. vote

9. beard

10. friar

source: grammarly.com

Vocabulary

commonly

általánosan, elterjedten

to misspell

rosszul, hibásan leírni

noun

főnév

adjective

melléknév

adverb

határozószó

shade

árnyalat

dull

unalmas

joyless

örömtelen

ambiguous

nem egyértelmű, ellentmondásos

owl

bagoly

nightingale

fülemüle

plowman

szántóvető

lexicographer

szótárszerkesztő

to no avail

eredmény nélkül

accepted

elfogadott

closely

alaposan

to observe

megfigyelni, megvizsgálni

interchangeable

felcserélhető

flexible

rugalmas

Grey’s Anatomy

Grace klinika

breed of dog

kutyafajta

radiation

sugárzás

matter

anyag

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