the calculus

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Thu Mar 15 20:30:34 UTC 2007

At 3/15/2007 05:17 PM, Bill Mullins wrote:
> >At 3/14/2007 06:50 PM, Wilson wrote:
> >>However, I am forced
> >>to admit that the number of occasions upon which I need to speak or
> >>write of the "least common denominator" is vanishingly small.
> >
> >Wilson has thus moved on to calculus.
>Or, as my calculus teacher would have said, "Wilson has thus moved
>on to the calculus."
>I dunno why he always used a "the" in front of it.  (I've heard
>people talking about getting
>"the cancer" instead of "cancer".)

My error -- in my dotage, I'd forgotten that it *is* "the
calculus".  As the obsolete OED2 writes, " The differential calculus
is often spoken of as 'the calculus'."  But why, oh OED2?  See, which
guesses from the Latin as "the way to compute".



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