fairy tale or fairytale?


New Member
Portuguese - Brazil
Please, I need to know if the correct spelling for "fairy tale" is "fairy tale" or "fairytale". Are the two options correct?
  • Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    They are both acceptable as nouns, although if you want an adjective it would be fairy-tale or fairytale (eg a fairy-tale/fairytale romance). Both forms are given in the WR Dictionary (= Concise Oxford Dictionary).


    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    Both are equally correct and so is the third alternative fairy-tale. There is rarely any one correct answer for simple noun + noun compounds like this: in English, it just doesn't matter much which you write.


    British English
    I believe it to be 2 words, however things like the Pogues song, 'Fairytale of New York' try to convince me other wise. Thoughts?

    << Moderator's note: Merged with a previous thread. >>
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    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    I find dictionaries very helpful when checking spelling.

    The American Heritage Dictionary and the Concise OED agree that the noun fairy tale is two words. It can also be an adjective (modifying "romance", for example); that's one word, fairytale, in the US, but hyphenated, fairy-tale, in the UK.
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