Is it ‘judgment’ or ‘judgement’?

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By Alex Aldridge on

Row breaks out as two former Lord Chancellors keep the ‘e’


The legal profession has been rocked by what many view as an unpardonable misspelling by two highly esteemed lawyers.

Writing this morning in the Daily Mail, former Lord Chancellors Baron Irvine of Lairg and Baron Mackay of Clashfern used ‘judgement’ with an ‘e’ to describe the Brexit, er, judgment.


During a week in which many have found their whole world view called into question by political events, there are fears that this could be the last straw for some. Indeed, 11KBW silk Sean Jones QC seemed to be struggling to come to terms with what had happened, as he tweeted:

Having been told by top journalist and Legal Cheek contributor Joshua Rozenberg that “both spellings are widely used”, Jones responded with a tale from personal experience:

Derry once expressed himself with characteristic firmness on the issue when I drafted some submissions for him.

But Rozenberg was standing his ground:

Happily, as the debate continued to rage, barrister and judge James Turner QC was able to establish a consensus, which he illustrated with a helpful example.

But just when you thought that some certainty had arrived into an increasingly hard to understand world, Rozenberg — whose honorary QC status combined with his Twitter blue tick arguably places him above Turner in rank — chipped back in with the final word:

Sorry lawyers, it looks like the press might have won this latest power struggle. But then again, does anyone listen to the mainstream media anymore?