Another one bites the dust?

ronbutters at AOL.COM ronbutters at AOL.COM
Thu Sep 6 17:01:39 UTC 2007

Such examples get discussed here periodically, and the issue is pretty trivial. The anglicization of loan words is normal and inevitable.

Those of us who know (or care) about the foreign-language plural forms for various loans are in a minority. I personally chuckle when I hear Duke English professors say "a criteria," but I also chuckle at my own snobbery. I do not myself use "datum" or "criterium" -- & I pronounce an "-s" on "flower" to pluralize it, even though the French generally do not.

------Original Message------
From: Joel S. Berson
Sender: American Dialect Society
ReplyTo: American Dialect Society
Sent: Sep 6, 2007 12:22 PM
Subject: Re: [ADS-L] Another one bites the dust?

At 9/6/2007 12:03 PM, Gerald Cohen wrote:
>I've often heard "a phenomena" and "a criteria,"  and last night on
>the news someone spoke of "a paparazzi." We deal here with a
>tendency (not a law, though, of course) to shift the plural to the
>singular. I've noticed many more examples over the years, but they
>don't come to mind at the moment.  Maybe it's time to compile them.

And "a grafitti".


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