ensure and ensue


I really don’t want to become a whinging pedant who nags constantly about word confusions but every day as I read the news at breakfast I encounter one that I had never thought possible. 

Today it was ensured instead of ensued.

‘A debate then ensured about the mathematics of the suggestion…’ ABC News Digital

I discover that there are scattered examples of this confusion to be found on the internet, enough to confirm that it is a growing danger.  The problem is, I think, that ensure and ensue can turn up in the same context, particularly in conjunction with debate.The debate ensured that everyone had their say. A debate ensued which gave everyone their say.  While ensure has comfortably high frequency, ensue does not. And so ensure takes over.

Let’s hope tomorrow’s breakfast reading is error-free. I’d like a rest.

Sue ButlerComment