Speedometre?

Dennis Moore

Senior Member
Spanish - Spain
Hi guys!

I know that in the UK the ending -tre is preferred over the ending -ter, which is more American (theatre/theater, centre/center, etc). So my question is, I know that the device that tells you how fast you're driving is the speedometer, but is that the British spelling too? Would it be "speedometre" instead? Do you guys call it something else? Because, according to Cambridge dictionary, "speedometre" doesn't seem to exist.

Thanks!
 
  • Chasint

    Senior Member
    English - England
    In British English we have two different words. However they are pronounced the same.

    A metre is a unit of distance. Hence kilometre, centimetre.

    A meter is a measuring device. Hence ammeter, barometer.
     

    boozer

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    ETB is right, of course. For me: metre = 100 centimetres; -meter - device.
    I also pronounce them slightly differently:
    metre - meeeeeeetah
    speedometer - speeedOmittah

    That is, in speedometer the /i/ in meter is shorter.
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    ETB is right, of course. For me: metre = 100 centimetres; -meter - device.
    I also pronounce them slightly differently:
    metre - meeeeeeetah
    speedometer - speeedOmittah

    That is, in speedometer the /i/ in meter is shorter.
    The bare words "metre" and "meter" are pronounced the same: /miːtə/

    Traditionally, this is how all versions of "metre" are pronounced in BrE, but relatively few people (I am one of them) still pronounce kilometre that way (/kɪləˌmiːtə/), and /kɪˈlɒmɪtə/ has been the more common pronunciation for decades.

    The various types of meter are usually (always?) pronounced /mɪtə/ and are preceded by a short vowel. Thus a micrometre (/ˈmʌɪkrə(ʊ)ˌmiːtə/) is a very short distance (one thousandth of a millimetre), that might be measured using a micrometer (/mʌɪˈkrɒmɪtə/).
     
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