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Questions tagged [latin]

Questions about the use of Latin words and phrases in English. For questions purely about Latin, visit our sister site Latin Language Stack Exchange.

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Can "et ali" be proper?

There are some non-published works that I am reading that were written by a professor, so I do not feel I can discount his claims out-of-hand. However, he uses a term I have never read and can find no ...
John's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
53 views

"something qua something" vs "something simpliciter"

I am wondering if there is a difference between the phrases. I have recently come across a text that uses the phrases "ideology, simpliciter" and "ideology qua ideology" near each ...
user501724's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
114 views

Are the words elision and ellipsis related etymologically?

Are the words elision and ellipsis related etymologically? For some reason Wiktionary hints at no despite the two words' appearances. I know there meanings have kind of become conflated in the modern ...
languagelover3000's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
175 views

Why does "consecutive" have a 'c' instead of a 'q'?

The etymology of the word shows it comes from the Latin consequi, to follow after, which is an origin of the word sequential as well. So why is consecutive not spelled consequtive, or why is ...
Austin Hill's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
171 views

Etymology of "mile" -> mille passus -> thousand steps - not large enough a distance

It is undisputed that a mile (measure of distance) comes from the latin mille passus. Mille means one thousand (1,000) and passus is translated to the Engish cognate "paces". It is therefore ...
Bastiaan Quast's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
99 views

Change name of Latin regulations to italics and/or double quotes to conform to Chicago style?

Working on conforming to the Chicago Manual of Style an authorized new edition of book first published decades ago at OUP (New York). This passage was originally rendered as: The architects of ...
Typothalamus's user avatar
6 votes
4 answers
1k views

What is the difference between “To every action” and “For every action”?

Here are two statements: The first statement is: To every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction. The second statement is: For every action there is always an equal and opposite ...
Syamaprasad Chakrabarti's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
213 views

On the origins of the use of "key" or "clavis" to refer to the keys of an organ

I'm in the middle of some research on the origins of the word "keyboard" to refer to the thing we all type on to communicate online these days. There's a clear genealogy backwards from the ...
Walker's user avatar
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6 votes
3 answers
1k views

Why did the /ʌ/ or /ʊ/ vowel in the Latin fundāre become the /aʊ/ of foundation?

Foundation has its origins in the Latin: OED fundātiōn-em. < Latin fundātiōn-em, noun of action < fundāre
FlatAssembler's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
160 views

What is the opposite of et seq.?

What Latin-derived abbreviation could be used in place of "and the previous ones" or "and the predecessors" i.e., the opposite of et seq.? I can't start from the other end and use ...
Ana Nimbus's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
428 views

What does the word "verifactive" mean?

In Introduction to Functional Grammar, in the section on conjunction, Halliday labels the conjuncts "actually", "in fact" and "as a matter of fact" as "verifactive&...
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34 votes
7 answers
5k views

Why are "i.e." and "e.g." written in lower case with periods, while "NB" is typically written in CAPS with no periods?

According to my armchair research on common abbreviations of nota bene, it appears that NB is the most common now, with N.B. being more common in centuries past after taking over the "original&...
SO_fix_the_vote_sorting_bug's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
3k views

The history of “to see say” better known as “voir dire”

Fans of the American TV show, Law & Order, may be familiar with the procedure called voir dire, whereby lawyers interrogate would-be-members of the jury in order to select jurors who will be ...
Mari-Lou A's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
80 views

Why did English start verbalizing Latin past participles, not keep nativizing infinitive suffixes like it used to do to French verbs? [closed]

The way English adapted French verbs used to be quite straightforward: swap the French infinitive suffixes with Middle English -en: Latin crīdāre > Old French crier > Middle English crien (13th ...
Vun-Hugh Vaw's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
833 views

Is the word "serie" used in English? (as a singular of "series")

As a continental, I would normally use serie to describe a single set, and series to describe multiple sets: I own a BWM 1 Serie, but I own a collection of 5 Series My favourite TV serie is The ...
Bastiaan Quast's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
810 views

rascal etymology

I use the word rascal (as in troublemaker) to describe my 7-month old daughter. My father in law (from Costa Rica) recently used the Spanish word "rascar" (rascarse) meaning to scratch, ...
Bastiaan Quast's user avatar
-2 votes
2 answers
562 views

Why are "just" and "justice" written with a "j", while "language" is written with a "g", when they all come from Latin?

The word "language" comes from Latin and is written with a "g". The adjective "just" and its noun form "justice" also come from Latin. These are the only words ...
Arunabh's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
36 views

English phrase or word to describe a scenario where people say something that is completely unrelated to the conversation or topic [duplicate]

I think the phrase I'm looking for has Latin roots. Ad... Something. But I just can't remember it for some reason. Can someone help?
Anthony's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
115 views

Why is semibreve commonly pronounced as ˈsɛm iˌbriv?

I am seeing this on some dictionary sites: / ˈsɛm iˌbriv, -ˌbrɛv / But, I've only heard it (in Anglophone musical contexts) as ˈsɛm iˌbriv. I wasn't aware about a cafe breve until yesterday. This ...
ljs.dev's user avatar
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0 votes
2 answers
617 views

Abbreviation for 'further information can be found'

I am looking for the formal abbreviation for something like "the further information can be found", e.g.: "lorem ipsum (the further information can be found in table 2.4)". My ...
obolen_an's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
277 views

The word "miracle" suggests, through common usage, a positive thing. Has it always? Or, like "awe", did it used to simply mean "momentous"?

Oxford asserts the word comes to us from Latin's miraculum, or an ‘object of wonder’, which in turn derives from mirari (‘to wonder’), itself a conjugation of mirus (‘wonderful’). Since "wonder&...
NerdyDeeds's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
187 views

Ad hominem for non persons

An ad hominem argument is typically, according to Wikipedia, "a rhetorical strategy where the speaker attacks the character, motive, or some other attribute of the person making an argument ...
SoZettaSho's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
70 views

Pluralization of Latin origin words

I heard that words borrowed from Latin take irregular plural form. (examples: datum/data, fungus/fungi, alga/algae) But how can we tell that whether a word (such as 'bus', 'plum', or 'idea') has Latin ...
Thunderweb's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
130 views

Why 'd' in 'Aeneid'?

The Latin poem Aeneis is Aeneid in English. How did the last d come about? A few suspects by quick search: /ð/ → /d/ shift in English, but there must be a shift /s/ → /ð/. It seems romance languages ...
sundowner's user avatar
  • 647
-2 votes
1 answer
146 views

Does "pig" (fat animal) come from the Latin "pinguedo" (fat)?

Does "pig" (fat animal) come from the Latin pinguedo (fat)?
Geremia's user avatar
  • 722
1 vote
1 answer
205 views

'Miscellaneous': must be followed by a plural count noun

Garner's fourth reads Miscellaneous must be followed by a plural count noun; it does not work with an abstract mass noun. Exceptions are set phrases such as miscellaneous shower/income. and An ...
GJC's user avatar
  • 2,509
0 votes
0 answers
48 views

Which one is more correct? "a plaintiff pro se" or "a pro se plaintiff"?

"Pro se" is Latin for "for self", or "for himself". Therefore it makes more sense to me to use it in English as in "a plaintiff pro se". However I have seen ...
rapt's user avatar
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4 votes
3 answers
1k views

Do "elision" and "ratatouille" have unmarked plural forms?

According to Microsoft® Encarta® 2009, the word elision has an unmarked plural elision (no -s suffix) as an alternative to elisions. Can "elision" be used as a plural form? If so, is it due ...
GJC's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
161 views

Is it common to use 'terminus a quo' in academic writing?

I'm writing an academic paper and I want to replace the word 'starting point' with 'terminus a quo'. I'm not sure if this Latin word is commonly used. I'm trying to make my language more interesting ...
Zhengrong's user avatar
  • 151
2 votes
1 answer
191 views

The pronunciation of sciurine (pertaining to squirrels)

I am intrigued by the pronunciation for the adjective for squirrel, "sciurine". In Wiktionary, the pronunciation in IPA is '/ˈsaɪjʊɹaɪn/' ('/ˈsʌɪjᵿrʌɪn/' in the OED online), which strikes me ...
Matteo Ferla's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
163 views

Correct pronunciation of "parietal lobe" from neuroanatomy [closed]

When I studied neuroanatomy at university, my tutor (who later it turns out studied Latin in school), uses a different pronunciation than other neuroscientists. I prefer his pronunciation, but which ...
Black Square's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
4k views

Sixth from last? pro pre ante pen ult [closed]

There is a latin sequence of terms that refer to order from last: ultimate, last penultimate, second from last antepenultimate, third from last preantepenultimate, forth from last ...
Hooked's user avatar
  • 354
1 vote
1 answer
195 views

Are "i.e." and "e.g." initialisms?

I was told that abbreviations consist of initialisms (FBI, a.k.a.†), acronyms (NATO, ), and shortened words (ad, bike). † Thanks to Pete Kirkham for correcting me: for most people a.k.a. is an ...
john c. j.'s user avatar
-4 votes
1 answer
443 views

How can I keep away from latinate? [closed]

Are there resources to help me keep away from latinate when I write? Preferably, they would let me trade latinate words for older, better words. A thesaurus might help (or better, a good dictionary ...
RMM's user avatar
  • 9
1 vote
1 answer
99 views

Revisiting "ee.g." (versus "e.g.")

How is "e.g." pluralized? Responses to the above article and other critiques of "ee.g." (insisting on "e.g.") roundly dismiss it as an aberration and even vilify it. Yet ...
Peter Zelchenko's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
64 views

Neolog / prefix for use with bubble+ology [closed]

I want to coin a word that means the study of financial bubbles. After learning that Bubbleology is some kind of metropolitan tea beverage, my immediate hunch of "Bubbleology" lost a great ...
Arash Howaida's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
1k views

Why does the word ‘suffix’ have a double ‘ff’ while ‘prefix’ has a single ‘f’?

While writing the word ‘suffix’, I stopped to do a spellcheck as a result of the ‘ff’. I did not do so with the word ‘prefix’ as I was comfortable with the ‘pre’ and ‘fix’. I looked up ‘ff’ vs. ‘f’ ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
147 views

Is there an equivalent phrase to "a priori" and "a posteriori" to indicate "during"? [closed]

If a priori means "ahead of time" and a posteriori means "after the fact", is there a latin phrase to denote "during the course of the fact"? A periori, perhaps? Or am I ...
Louis Thibault's user avatar
19 votes
5 answers
4k views

Early usage of Martian meaning inhabitant of Mars

Martian as an adjective meaning "of, pertaining to, or characteristic of the planet Mars" (originally in reference to astrological influence) is from the 14th century according to Etymonline;...
Gio's user avatar
  • 4,766
1 vote
0 answers
130 views

When should Latinisms be Italicized? [duplicate]

Some Latinisms are usually italicized in English whereas some Latin loanwords are not, even in the same text. However, I cannot find any clear pattern. Are there clear rules or guidelines about it? ...
stultissimus's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
3k views

When did the word "demon" (for evil spirit) come into popular usage in the English language?

The English word "demon" has been found throughout the New Testament in modern bible translations since the 19th century. However, in the 16th and 17th century and earlier (Tyndale Bible, ...
user12711's user avatar
  • 143
4 votes
2 answers
3k views

Is there a term to describe a human who has been turned into an animal by some external force or actor?

I am compiling a database of deities, mythological creatures, fairy tale or folkloric beings, and other similar entities, complete with categorisation based on various factors. In doing so, I have ...
Pikanchion's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
916 views

Academic / formal equivalent of : there are two sides to every story

"Every coin has two sides" or "there are two sides to every story" is often over-used and may even come off as cliche-sounding. I will of course use them still if that's what I ...
Arash Howaida's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
215 views

When was ad hoc introduced in English?

When was ad hoc introduced in English? I found this, but it is only a vague speculation. Originally, ad hoc is a Latin phrase, and it is speculated that the term was first used in English in the mid-...
Juniper Scott's user avatar
3 votes
0 answers
88 views

Synonyms for "impact ventilation" and "cross ventilation" of (West) Germanic roots (dead / alive / old / new)

A German "end of the year" 2020 overview of absurdities and rather funny trends mentions British "Corona talk" about the German words Stoßlüften = impact ventilation, Querlüften = ...
questionto42's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
52 views

How do Latin etymons that end in English in *-tion* nearly always name a process?

I don't think the emboldening is correct, because -ing gerunds name a process. See https://english.stackexchange.com/a/444498. -tion just names a result of that process. What do you think?         In ...
user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
49 views

When shortening the title of a book, should it be prefaced by a definite article?

I am writing a research paper which is concerned with Euler's book 'Introductio in analysin infinitorum'. May I refer to it as "the 'Introductio'"? And would it be wrong to simply refer to ...
IIM's user avatar
  • 123
8 votes
4 answers
841 views

Is using the plural form (in place of the original singular) of these Latin/Greek loan words acceptable?

The following Latin/Greek singular vs. plural errors make me cringe every time: bacterium - bacteria criterion - criteria millennium - millennia phenomenon - phenomena It's extremely typical for an ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
71 views

About i.e. and e.g [closed]

I have four small questions about i.e. and e.g. How do you call them, “words” or other things? When using (writing or typing), do we usually use the italic version i.e. / e.g. or the normal version i....
Coco's user avatar
  • 149
0 votes
2 answers
115 views

What's the "single" derivation of omni?

So we know "omni" is a prefix indicating encompassing of everything. We could say, omnidirectional for example, which is "receiving signals from or transmitting in all directions." ...
notacorn's user avatar
  • 103

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