Celebrate National Donut Day! Or is it doughnut?
An assortment of Krispy Kreme doughnuts in Decatur, Ala. (Photo: John Godbey, AP)
National Donut Day, the first Friday in June, is always the most delicious day of the year. Or wait, is National DOUGHnut day the sweetest day of the year?
Which one is right, “donut” or “doughnut”? Does anyone really know?
The originator of the holiday, The Salvation Army, started the tradition in 1938 in Chicago. During World War I, “Donut Lassies” served the treat to soldiers as a reminder of encouragement and support from home. The Salvation Army continues the practice by delivering donuts to those in need and “donut lovers across the country.” On its site, the holiday is called “National Donut Day” for 2019.
But the internet is torn on how to spell the fried treat. Even dictionaries seem to be unsure on what the proper spelling is.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary lists both variants under their definition of the term. Either can be searched in their online dictionary and each definition lets users of the dictionary know that “donut” is a less-common spelling of the classic term, “doughnut”.
While the treat remains tasty no matter how you spell the term, the response to Merriam-Webster’s acceptance of both terms referring to the fried-dough halo in the English language isn’t always as sweet.
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Merriam-Webster posted an article entitled “Why It’s OK To Spell It ‘Donut'” on their site due to hawk-eyed readers who “notice that we do include this shorter spelling, as well as doughnut, and let us know they’re displeased.”
They list both because from the mid-20th century onward, Merriam-Webster had encountered the “donut” version in professionally edited and published text. Dunkin’, formerly known as Dunkin’ Donuts, was one of the popularizers of the phonetic spelling of the word and helped to popularize it, according to the article.
Dictionary.com also declared via Twitter that either spelling was fine:
“A #NationalDoughnutDay PSA: Donut: A small cake of sweetened or, sometimes, unsweetened dough fried in deep fat, typically shaped like a ring
Doughnut: See above
Do not: Two words to keep in mind when tempted to judge either spelling.”
So, pick your poison — jelly, Boston cream, powdered sugar, plain, chocolate glazed, plain glazed, or sprinkles. No matter what, you can’t go wrong with flavor or spelling this National Donut/Doughnut Day.
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