Your Heyday Did Not Have Any Hay In It

Alright, that might not always be true. If you grew up on a farm, you might have very affectionate memories of haystacks. Nonetheless, the only correct spelling to use in this reminiscent context is 'heyday', not 'hayday' (and not 'hey day' or 'hay day' either).

Hay picture from Shutterstock

The Macquarie Dictionary defines a 'heyday' as "the stage or period of highest vigour or fullest strength", which is pompous but clear. The phrase apparently originates in the expression 'high day', referring to a religious festival. Whatever their belief system, people who write "back in my hayday" presumably couldn't spell back then either. Fortunately, it's never too late to learn. Accuracy matters.

Lifehacker's Mind Your Language column offers bossy advice on improving your writing.


Comments

    So, does this mean that people have been misspelling their distress signals for the past 90 years? :P

    Accuracy matters When it come to archaic phrases like this one I doubt anybody really cares!

    Interesting article on the views of a professor of linguistics reminding us that language is constantly changing and how many of these 'misspellings' may well become the accepted correct spelling. http://www.theage.com.au/digital-life/digital-life-news/the-internet-to-transform-spelling-20130602-2njvd.html
    "Accuracy matters" maybe not so much anymore at least for heyday(hayday) after all how many people still spell color as colour.

      Britons, Irish, Australians, New Zealanders, Indians, Canadians, French etc.

      I have never met someone who has spelt it like color except on the internet and in America.

    I still spell colour as...well colour! "Color" looks completely wrong to me!

    From Wikipedia: The "-our" spelling is taught in schools nationwide as part of the Australian curriculum.

    I think I'll stick with it too.

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