Titbit or Tidbit?

I was showing my site to an associate yesterday and they, trying to be helpful I am sure, informed me that it is not “titbit” as I use on my posting heading but instead “tidbit”.

It actually took me some work to convince them they were wrong. The word really is “titbit”.

On page 876 of “The Australian Oxford Paperback Dictionary” third edition:

titbit n. a choice bit of something, e.g., of food or of gossip or information.

Or on page 1044 of the Chambers Concise 20th Century Dictionary 1992:

titbit tit’bit. n. a choice delicacy or item.—Also, especially in the U.S., tid’bit.

My mother always said the only real dictionary was Chambers 20th Century.

And for those that prefer looking words up on the Web, the follow snippet is from Dictionary.com.

Titbit1

And finally, the follow snippet is from the online Collins World English Dictionary.

Titbit2

So, titbit is correct. If you are American you can optionally use tidbit, but the correct word is titbit.

titbit3I use Microsoft’s Windows Live Writer to craft up and format my posting and, interestingly, if you put in tidbit it underlines it with a wriggly red line indicating a spelling error (see snippet at right) and when you right-click it for suggested corrections the options are “titbit” or “titbits”.

So, hopefully, that settles that.

BarryMark