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Just saw the definition of word miss from some web dictionary, which says "to fail to hit, catch, etc something." I suppose this could be written as "to fail to hit, catch, or do something alike something." Does that etc mean, technically, "or many other things alike"? How? Doesn't et mean "and" in Latin?

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You have the first part of the phrase etc nailed; the rest of it - cetera - means "the rest" (from the Latin cēterus). So put together, they mean "and the rest" or "and the remainder" or "and so forth". The reader should understand that similar such things are also included.

However, this is not a logical AND necessarily, which you were getting at. Lists containing etc are often suggestive and not absolutely precise as to their contents.

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  • -ducks, red things, people with bowling balls, etc. Mar 15, 2015 at 13:00

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