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With an E or without an E?

Cole Miller

With an E or without an E? That is the question. 

Whisky or Whiskey and is there a difference?

Scotland and Canada spell it without the E, Whisky. While the Americans and Irish spell it with an E. The rest of the world gets to pick and choose. Well everyone but Scotland gets to pick, it is Scottish law that it is spelled Whisky. Although Canadian, Americans and Irish mainly stick with their regions traditional spelling, Makers Mark and George Dickel go against the grain spelling "whisky". We aren't sure why but it is likely due to both founders having Scottish heritage,

The distillation of whisky first began in Scotland and Ireland in the 1500's. Both countries spoke Gaelic, but each country had different dialects.

Scotland- usquebaugh

Ireland- uisce beatha

Both of these words in Gaelic mean water of life, they are roughly pronounced....

USH-KA BAH-HA.

Notice the Irish spelling has an extra E! These two variations became exposed to English they slowly translated into their respective spellings. The Irish E stayed in the spelling throughout this process.

When Britain settled the new world, Canada and USA, both spelled whisky without the E. As the American revolutionary war ended, the Americans needed a way to identify American whisky from British whisky. This was done by adopting the Irish spelling, the extra E signified that American Whisky was not British.

So is there a difference between Whisky and Whiskey? Kinda but not really. 

Just please don't write "Whisk(e)y". like this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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