Center vs centre

Center vs centre ??

Is these two words interchangeable depending which part of the world you are living in?

Is there a rule to follow in propel English?

Please give examples for your explanation for clarity. Thanks.

Hello, Jimic:

(1) Here in the United States, we usually spell it as

“center.” For most Americans, “centre” looks “funny.”

(2) There other differences, too: “theater” here, but

“theatre” among (amongst) our British friends.

(a) Occasionally, an American theater might use “theatre” in its

name – maybe because some consider it more “elegant.”

(3) Please be careful about saying “proper English.” Some

people feel that American spelling is the proper way (for example,

“color”); others feel that the British way is (“colour”). I think

that many language professionals give this advice: If you

are writing for an American audience, use American spellings;

for a British audience, use British spellings. But – please –

do not use the term “proper English.” It will start a lot of

(friendly) arguments!!!

Sincerely yours,


Jimic seems to be posting from Ontario, Canada, so that may explain the confusion. I believe Canada ‘officially’ uses the British system of spelling, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see a mix if for no other reason than Canada’s proximity to the States. In addition, Ontario is right next door to Quebec, which of course is bilingual (French and English). The British use the French spelling ‘centre’.

I see no problem whatsoever using British spelling for an American audience (or vice versa). The main thing I would recommend is to try to use one spelling system rather than mixing two.

Here is an interesting chart I found online:
British, Canadian and American spelling

[size=75]“My spelling is Wobbly. It’s good spelling but it Wobbles, and the letters get in the wrong places.” ~ A. A. Milne[/size]

How about shopping centre?
center of the circle?
Is there any different?

In British English:

shopping centre.
centre of the circle.

In American English:
shopping center.
center of the circle.