2

Let a multiplural be a word that has more than one singular form with different meanings. For example, AXES is the plural of both AX and AXIS and so is a multiplural. I have found these multiplurals: AXES ELLIPSES TAXES

Is there a name for these other than the one I just made up? Are there others without the -ES ending? Can anyone find any others?

EDIT: The new list I have after looking at the answers (and adding one more I missed) is as follows:

AXES

BASES

CAVIES

DOES

ELLIPSES

TAXES

TRIES

1

See the Wikipedia article on heteronyms. Its definition includes the phenomenon you are referring to.

In linguistics, a heteronym (also known as a heterophone) is a word that is written identically but has a different pronunciation and meaning. In other words, they are homographs that are not homophones.

Examples of "multiplurals" are listed in the "Further examples" table.

  • The only pair not mentioned by OP is does = deeresses & does = do's. – Edwin Ashworth May 2 '14 at 15:29
1

Yes; there are at least two more pairs, although three of these are obscure words:

Cavies is the plural of cavie and of cavy.

Tries is the plural of trie and of try.

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