Chicago drops the hyphen from "e-mail"

September 8th, 2017

Via the indispensable Grammar Girl podcast, I’ve learned that The Chicago Manual of Style has recently been updated, and that one of the changes in the latest version is the removal of the hyphen from the word “e-mail.”

This follows The Associated Press Stylebook’s 2011 change on matter, and is certainly in line with popular usage and other style guides. But I remain a curmudgeon on the issue and lament the change. The natural pronunciation of “email” is very different than that of “e-mail,” and other hyphenated words with single-letter prefixes have not undergone similar transformations.

Alongside Chicago’s change, the AP themselves have instituted a similar change to the word “e-sports,” which now loses its hyphen also. This means that the two words are now exceptions to the AP’s general rule of hyphenating “e-” terms.

Oh, well. At least we know it wasn’t an easy decision.



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