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How should be the word parking correctly split at the end of the line? Should it be par- king or park- ing? The latter is suggested by my word processor, but I would say the former is correct. Which one is it?

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We generally hyphenate at morpheme boundaries, so the separated pieces are more intelligible - for instance, park is a free morpheme (word) and -ing is a bound morpheme or suffix. This is not the same point at which syllable boundaries fall in speech. – StoneyB Mar 16 '14 at 20:17
For future reference, dictionary.com shows both hy·phen·a·tion boundaries and [si-lab-ik] breaks. – Tyler James Young Mar 16 '14 at 21:48
This question appears to be off-topic because it is about typesetting – FumbleFingers Mar 16 '14 at 23:43
up vote 9 down vote accepted

The former is how we divide parking into syllables in speech (following the Maximum Onset Principle):


The latter is how we divide parking when we need to break it across lines in writing. We identify the suffix -ing and separate it from the previous morpheme, ignoring pronunciation:


However, there is an exception to this rule. If a letter before the suffix has been doubled, the hyphen goes between the doubled pair:

plan·ning    (not *plann·ing)

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Oh, so both are in fact correct? Amazing. – the swine Mar 16 '14 at 21:44
@theswine no, only park-ing is correct. – Tim S. Mar 17 '14 at 2:31
One is acceptable for speech, the other is correct for writing. If I want to pronounce it as "park-ing", it's correct, but sounds odd. A similar case: "mistake". It is often pronounced "mi-stake", but should be written "mis-take", as its origin is a wrong/erroneous (mis) action (take). – Phil Perry May 20 '14 at 13:36

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