Lewis carroll

The difference between ‘sliver’ and ‘slither’ is a piece of cake

When people say a slither of cake, do they not remember that snakes slither? ‘Slither slide; sliver small piece,’ says the Guardian style guide. ‘Writers often get this wrong.’ True. The Guardian’s sport pages recently wondered what could give ‘Man United the faintest slither of hope’. All the papers do it. I got Veronica to make one of those word-searches of a newspaper database and, of the eight occurrences of slither in British nationals in a month, only four were of the serpentine kind. Half were the erroneous spelling of sliver. To complicate matters, there is a popular way of speaking at the moment that makes no distinction between th