A picture caption in Sunday's editions transposed the identification of newly arrived British Ambassador Peter Jay and Ewen Fergusson, a British diplomat accompanying Jay.

The United States and Great Britain decided yesterday to draft "firm proposals" for "one-man, one-vote" majority rule in white-governed Rhodesia, despite the latest rebuff from Rodesian Prime Minister Ian Smith.

That decision emerged from seven hours of talks with British Foreign Secretary David Owen, including a 90-minute White House meeting with President Carter.

Owen said it is "a tremendous comfort" to Britain that the President is personally involving himself in attempts to head off spreading racial warfare in Rhodesia, which broke away from British rule in 1965.

Following later talks with Secretary of State Cyrus R. Vance and other officials, Owen said at the British embassy that Carter "is totally engaged in the problem."

Vance told reporters at the White House that "I wouldn't want to under estimate the difficulties" of this latest in a series of attempts - frusted so far - to achieve majority rule in Rhodesia by diplomacy. 'It's a very, very difficult situation to deal with," Vance said, but the alternative is "not only a terrible thing for the people in Rhodesia, but for surrounding countries as well."

Diplomats concede in private that the odds always have been against a peaceful settlement in Rhodesai, where 270,000 whites rule more than 6 million blacks. Guerrilla leaders maintain that only a black military victory can end white domination.

Until now, British and American diplomats have been exploring with black nationalist leaders and Smith's government various proposals for a new Rhodesian constitution, free elections based on "universal suffrage," and a transition to majority rule, probably with an outside peacekeeping force.

"The time is now coming," Owen said, "when we think we will have to put forward our firm proposals," despite anticipated opposition. Vance said, "We are building on the current (Anglo-Amerian) initiative and adding new aspects to it."

Vance said the discussions will continue this morning before Owen's return to London, and British specialists will remain in Washington to continue the talks.

These proposals, officials said, then will be reviewed by Vance and Owen, probably in London, on Vance's way back from his forthcoming trip to the Middle East. That trip, on the even more complex Arab-Israeli dispute, is expected to run from Aug. 1 to about Aug. 10.

Vance said he and Owen will discuss at that time "the timing for the specific presentation of those (Rhodesian) proposals to all the parties."

Owen, with Vance beside him brushed aside the decision announced last Monday by Rhodesian's Smith to spurn existing Anglo-American peace formulas, dissolve Rhodesia's parliament, and set new elections for Aug. 31. These steps are all intended to reinforce the position of Smith, who is being challenged by whte rightists for bending too much to demands for majority rule.

Owen said Smith's sudden move is no "major new factor." The Aug. 31 election for a new parliament only "involves 3 per cent of the electorate in Rhodesia." Owen said, because of voting restrictions on blacks.

By contrast, Owen said, the one-man, one-vote plan "we put forward we think is acceptable to a broad majority of people who would live under an independent Zimbabwe" - the African name for Rhodesia. It is also "acceptable. I think to opinion world-wide." Owen said, and Smith should realize "he's taking on the whole of world opinion."

One central issue in the talks here is how to put together an outside peacekeeping force to separate the Rhodesian army and guerilla forces in order to permit an election.

Owen virtually acknowledged that the idea of a Commonwealth peacekeeping force has been shelved, after opposition inside the British cabinet and misgivings among black and white Commonwealth nations.

He referred to it yesterday as "the idea that was conceived at one stage for a Commonwealth force."