Language tip of the week: fulfil

Posted by on July 19, 2012

In this weekly post, we bring more useful content from the Macmillan Dictionary to English language learners. These tips are based on areas of English (e.g. spelling, grammar, collocation, synonyms, etc) which learners often find difficult. Here is some advice about spelling the verb fulfil:

The verb fulfil has only one ‘l’ in the middle (unlike the adjective full, which has a double ‘l’).
✗ Life is too short to enable man to fullfil his dreams.
✓ Life is too short to enable man to fulfil his dreams.

Note that in British English, there is one ‘l’ at the end of the verb: fulfil

In American English, there are two ‘l’s at the end: fulfill

In both British and American English, the final ‘l’ is doubled in the forms fulfilled and fulfilling:

✗ a duty that must be fulfiled
✓ a duty that must be fulfilled

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