Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Normal Words Flagged by Spell Check.

Normal Words Flagged by Spell Check

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated November 30, 2020)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


Spell check is flagging normal words in Linda's document, such as "there", "form", and "were". Even more oddly, she cannot click Ignore All to accept the words. Instead she must click Ignore once for each occurrence. She tried adding the words to the exclusion dictionary, but that didn't work, so Linda is looking for ideas on what to try next.

There are a couple of other things you can check. First of all, you should check to make sure that the language settings are correct for your document. If, for instance, the document contains some words marked as non-English, then those words would be checked by Word using a non-English dictionary, which might result in them being flagged.

The next thing to do is to check your dictionaries—custom and exclusion—and make sure that these common words do not appear in either of them. Other WordTips explain how to check the contents of dictionaries.

Speaking of dictionaries, you may want to check to make sure you are using the dictionary that came with Word, rather than some other dictionary. If the dictionary has changed, then it is very possible for the words to be marked as incorrect.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10750) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Normal Words Flagged by Spell Check.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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