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Stair Lifts Or Stairlifts

Language naturally evolves over time and the popular spelling, pronunciation and even to some extent definition of some words is different from those of the same words fifty to one hundred years ago. As the language starts to change it is the popular uptake of one version of a word over another which leads to the end result.

Stair Lifts Or Stairlifts

John McE writes articles on a number of subjects including stairlifts, mobility aids, stair lifts and chairlifts.

Have a look at different rental stair lifts here: http://www.stannahstairlifts.co.uk/en/our-products.html

Language naturally evolves over time and the popular spelling, pronunciation and even to some extent definition of some words is different from those of the same words fifty to one hundred years ago. People do not think twice about this, it is a natural part of any language. As the language starts to change it is the popular uptake of one version of a word over another which leads to the end result. So, stair lifts or stairlifts? My preference is for the single word and is what I predominantly use. However, the spell checker on the computer does not recognise the single word. Different online dictionaries had different results for stair lift and stairlift, with some not recognising the two word variety and some giving them the same definition.

Popular uptake would appear to agree with the spell checker as last month in the UK there were 40,500 searches for the phrase ‘stair lifts’, 33,100 searches for the word ‘stairlifts’ and a tied 18,100 searches for ‘stairlift’ and ‘stair lift’. Am I going against the trend, or am I ahead of the game?

Why do we push separate words together? It is common across the English language with words such as insofar, thereafter, furthermore, nevertheless, notwithstanding, nonetheless, moreover and overdue. These are but a few of the thousands of words which we have merged into one and they are known as compound words. Is there an explanation for it? Why do I feel the need to write stairlifts and not separate the two words? An automatic response may be that it is quicker or easier, but really, it doesn’t make that much difference. The time it takes to put a space between two words is negligible. There does not appear to be any clear, reasonable explanation or any consistency with this.

The hyphen further confuses the issue as people choose not to merge words, but feel that an entire space is just too divisive. Some words, or phrases depending on how you choose to write it, could be written as all three. For example; grownup, grown-up and grown up or signup, sign-up and sign up. However, the hyphen is usually a middle ground and precedes the complete merging of words. The length of time that this goes on for varies and does not always apply. For example, no one writes stair-lifts, it is either stair lifts or stairlifts.

I am going to stick to my guns and compound stair lifts, hopefully I will drive the evolution of the word stairlifts in line with the evolution of the product!

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