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Fuelling vs. Fueling

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The mystery of the spellings of certain words causes a lot of confusion for beginners of English language as they are unable to distinguish between the two. Consider the following sentences:

Ian was fuelling his car when he heard the crash.

Ian was fueling his car when he heard the crash.

Now which is the right sentence among these two? Both of them! Read this article through to understand the differences, meanings, usage and examples of the word.

Fuelling vs. Fueling

Origin:

The word fuelling originated from Middle English: from Old French fouaille, based on Latin focus ‘hearth’ (in late Latin ‘fire’).

Fuelling as verb:

The word fuelling is used as a verb in English language where it means to supply or power (an industrial plant, vehicle, or machine) with fuel.

Power stations fuelled by low-grade coal are a threat to our environment.

Another meaning of fuelling is to cause (a fire) to burn more intensely.

Petrol may have been used to fuel the fire.

Fuelling is also used in the sense of sustaining or inflaming (an intense feeling).

His resignation fuelled speculation of an imminent cabinet reshuffle.

Fuelling or fueling:

In American English, the verb fuel is inflected fueled and fueling—with one l. In all other main varieties of English, it becomes fuelled and fuelling—with two l‘s. The spelling difference extends to refuel, which makes refueled and refueling in American English and refuelled and refuelling everywhere else. It likewise extends to other, rarer derivatives such as fueler/fueller. Fuel is one of a large group of l-ending verbs whose inflected forms have lost the second l in American English. This change has happened in at least two waves, with some of the verbs losing the extra l in the early decades of the 20th century (e.g., travel, label), and many others dropping the l only over the last few decades (e.g., cancel, marshal). The story with fuel is a little different, because it was rare as a verb until the 20th century (it did exist as a verb earlier, but was rare and mostly figurative until 20th-century technology increased its usefulness). Outside the U.S., meanwhile, the American forms have not caught on much; the two-l forms still prevail by a large margin in the U.K., Ireland, Australia, South Africa, and New Zealand, while in 2013 Canadian news articles the U.S. forms appear about a quarter of the time.

Examples:

Meanwhile, word of a new round of economic change has created uncertainty among North Koreans, already fueling inflation. [New York Times]

Tehran is asking France’s Total SA to resume refueling its passenger aircraft. [Wall Street Journal]

In 2008, fueled by excitement over the presidential candidacy of then-Sen. Barack Obama, Will.i.am’s video “Yes We Can” became a viral hit. [LA Times]

One of Britain’s most common cancers could be fuelled by the E coli stomach bug, scientists believe. [Daily Mail (U.K.)]

A team of six personnel including doctors left Melbourne earlier today aboard an Australian government aircraft that refuelled in Hobart. [Sydney Morning Herald]

Keyera’s Mr. Smith says oil sands production growth is also fuelling a demand for storage space for condensate. [Globe and Mail (Canada)]

Iran accuses its foes in the West and the Arab world of fuelling the conflict by backing the opposition. [Irish Times]

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"Fuelling vs. Fueling." Grammar.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 22 Nov. 2017. <http://www.grammar.com/fuelling_vs._fueling>.

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