There is an annual event which some friends and I attend, let's call it "foodcon" for ease.

I am thinking about hosting a small and informal "social catch up" for a circle of close friends from that event, for a weekend, held about midway between the main foodcon annual events each year... but would that be "inter-food" or "intra-food" if I wanted to style it that kind of way?

Foodcons would be different events, which sounds like it should be "inter", but it's also the same (repeat/ongoing) event, which would make it "intra" (between 2 foodcons). Hint?

  • Really, Stilez? What did your dictionaries or thesauruses not tell you, please? – Robbie Goodwin Aug 6 '18 at 19:20
  • 1
    Really, yes. Because they told me what I knew, and nothing more, which was ambiguous when it came to actual usage related to "between two things that were also primarily regarded as parts within one collective/ongoing/periodically repeating thing" (a stream of ongoing and essentially-identical [for linguistic purposes] incidents of the same event) – Stilez Aug 6 '18 at 22:36

'Inter' means between, in the sense of involving several things

'Intra' means within, in the sense of internal to.

So an 'inter-school' competition means a competition between two or more schools. An intra-school competition is competition within the school.

If you mean your event to be 'between' two other events in time, then that would be an unusual use of the word 'inter'. Many would say incorrect.

'Intra' is definitely not correct. your event is not 'internal to' anything.

  • The key point is given by your answer - thank you! It's that the usage is "between events in time" rather than "between conceptual entities or points in space". A search for words starting inter/intra- between similar events in time, shows there aren't many, but they do exist; "inter" is the generally used prefix. Examples: inter-annual (between years), -glacial/-stadial (between glacial/stadial periods), -epidemic/-pandemic (between outbreaks), -generational (between generations), -mission/-mittent (possible: unsure?), -pluvial (between rains), -regnum (betwen reigns), -war (between wars) – Stilez Aug 6 '18 at 22:51
  • I've edited the title to be more general and helpful in future (a repeating event rather than specifically an annually repeating one) – Stilez Aug 6 '18 at 22:52

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.