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Important notice

Writing Tips has been archived and won’t be updated before it is permanently deleted.

For the most up-to-date content, please consult Writing Tips Plus, which combines content from Writing Tips and The Canadian Style. And don’t forget to update your bookmarks!

To begin your search, go to the alphabetical index below and click on the first letter of the word you are searching for.

offence, offense, offensive

Canadians prefer the British spelling offence to the American spelling offense, but both are acceptable.

  • Jackie was convicted of three offences under the Highway Traffic Act.
  • The best defence is a good offence.

Offensive, however, is always spelled with an s.

  • Would you find it offensive to be described as "a woman of a certain age"? Yes, I would.