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Chart 7

The Alice Chart


This is a very useful chart which helps to sort out correct use of the letters ie and ei in the spelling of some words.

Most come from Old English and incorporate ie as in field and believe, with very few containing ei as in receive.

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The name Alice was chosen by Duffy as it contains ce. This is a visual clue for memorising words such as perceive and ceiling.

The i before e except after c, as taught in many schools, applies.

Some words not in these two groups are dealt with in clever mnemonics, such as Why will no veil fit her? Because she wants it ie. Why is it hard for Queen Alice to reign? Again, as there is no c she wants it ie.

See The Manual for full details of the proper use of this chart.


This website presented by
educational psychologist
Judith Gleeson
B.A., M.Ed, T.C.
duffy remedial reading



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