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location Sydney, Australia
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visits member for 3 years, 3 months
seen Mar 5 at 23:31

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comment Why is “math” always pluralized in British English and singular in American English?
Ironically, neuter plural nouns in Ancient Greek (which is what mathematica is) would use a singular form of the verb, so you could say it's appropriate ;) It's a bit of a stretch of the imagination though...
Jun
23
comment Why is “math” always pluralized in British English and singular in American English?
That's an interesting theory but it's quite wrong. 1st declension nouns ending in -a can be feminine OR masculine (e.g. agricola, nauta), and -a is also the plural ending in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th decl. neuter nouns. μάθημα is Greek for "a thing which is learnt" and is singular and neuter. μαθηματικός is the adjective based on that, which means "related to learning"; τα μαθηματικά is the substantive derived from the adjective and means "the things related to learning" and as a substantive it is neuter and plural. mathematica is just the Latin transliteration.
Jun
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comment Why does “impregnable” mean *cannot be impregnated*?
No, impregnable only means too strong to be penetrated; impregnatable means capable of being impregnated.
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comment How common is “thrice”?
I think it would be more indicative to look at how often it's used in speech rather than writing. NB the OED notes it as 'formal or literary'. It could be that @RegDwighт's proof reader doesn't want that kind of tone in his writing.
Dec
28
comment How common is “thrice”?
Perhaps a poor choice of words, depending on what you take 'non-standard' to mean. By that, I meant it is not commonly used. Commonly understood, of course, but not used. And sure enough, the OED notes it as 'formal or literary'
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