Before the early 18th century English spelling was not standardized. Different standards became noticeable after the publishing of influential dictionaries . For the most part current BrE spellings follow those of Samuel Johnson 's Dictionary of the English Language (1755), while AmE spellings follow those of Noah Webster 's An American Dictionary of the English Language (1828). In Britain, the influences of those who preferred the French spellings of certain words proved decisive. In many cases AmE spelling deviated from mainstream British spelling; on the other hand it has also often retained older forms. Many of the now characteristic AmE spellings were popularized, although often not created, by Noah Webster. Webster chose already-existing alternative spellings "on such grounds as simplicity, analogy or etymology".  Webster did attempt to introduce some reformed spellings , as did the Simplified Spelling Board in the early 20th century, but most were not adopted. Later spelling changes in the UK had little effect on present-day US spelling, and vice versa.