A discussion (complaint, actually) on another thread led me to examine the use of vowels in the English language, and particularly the fact that American English seems to use fewer of them than are seen in British English. In my response, I said that the use of vowels in written English is not an accent, and I still hold that this is true, but the spelling is the representation of a vowel so there might be something to it. A few years ago, Slate published an article on the use of vowels in the English language that is interesting, although it doesn't precisely cover the subject that I was looking for. The point made in the Slate article is that there are more vowels than AEIOU and sometimes Y, at least in the spoken word. As for the spelling, if you've ever looked through documents from the American Colonial period on up, you'll see an evolution of spelling. Since they were largely British, it should be no surprise that Americans used just as many vowels as the British do at first but, over the years they seem to have invented their own way of spelling things, whether from laziness, education or other reasons.