English orthography is the writing system used to represent spoken English, allowing readers to connect the graphemes to sound and to meaning. It includes English's norms of spelling, hyphenation, capitalisation, word breaks, emphasis, and punctuation.
Like the orthography of most world languages, English orthography has a broad degree of standardisation. This standardisation began to develop when movable type spread to England in the late 15th century. However, unlike with most languages, there are multiple ways to spell every phoneme, and most letters also represent multiple pronunciations depending on their position in a word and the context.
This is partly due to the large number of words that have been borrowed from a large number of other languages throughout the history of English, without successful attempts at complete spelling reforms, and partly due to accidents of history, such as some of the earliest mass-produced English publications being typeset by highly trained, mul