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#5614 - 08/24/00 08:25 AM  
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Max Quordlepleen Offline
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#5615 - 08/24/00 09:43 AM Re: Virii - why not?  
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RhubarbCommando Offline
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Virii ?? why two "i"s ? (apart from hackneyed jokes about being able to see better)
Surely the plural of "virus" should be "viri": it could only be virii if the singular were virius (c.f. radius/radii)

It is the sort of question that bugs you, is it not?


#5616 - 08/24/00 10:08 AM  
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Max Quordlepleen Offline
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#5617 - 08/24/00 11:22 AM Re: Virii - why not?  
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RhubarbCommando Offline
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This is what is vulgarly referred to as "a cop out."

"Beauty is truth," you say; "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," is an aphorism also well accredited. Put them together and you can deduce that truth is in the eye of the beholder.
Which gives "viruses" an equal claim, I aver.


#5618 - 08/24/00 12:06 PM Re: Virii - why not?  
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TEd Remington Offline
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The plural is viri in Latin but viruses in English. I have seen it as viri in medical journals, but not anywhere else that I recall.

I suspect the reason for this apparent discrepancy is that viruses trips off the tongue better than do radiuses and hippopotamuses. The accented syllable (vir) is too close to the -i to be sonorous (at least in English).

Along those lines, most dictionaries show octopuses or octopi as the plural of octopus. In my view the latter is incorrect since octopus is not from Latin, but from Greek okto (eight) plus pous (foot).





TEd
#5619 - 08/24/00 03:06 PM Re: Virii - why not?  
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this too shall pass
>Along those lines, most dictionaries show octopuses or octopi as the plural of octopus. In my view the latter is incorrect since octopus is not from Latin, but from Greek okto (eight) plus pous (foot).

well, maybe we should compromise with octopodes then...


#5620 - 08/24/00 06:47 PM  
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Max Quordlepleen Offline
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#5621 - 08/24/00 10:33 PM Re: Virii - why not?  
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well, maybe we should compromise with octopodes then...

Thanks yet again, tsuwm, for setting us all straight. My beloved Chambers even agrees with you!!
It gives "octpuses" as archaic, "octopi" as wrong, and "octopodes" as correct. And I have seen this form used often, can't remember specifically where or when.

Rgds, lusy


#5622 - 08/24/00 10:48 PM  
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Max Quordlepleen Offline
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#5623 - 08/25/00 08:11 AM Re: Virii - why not?  
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Bridget Offline
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>, maybe we should compromise with octopodes then<

Can I infer from this that now I have moved to Australia I am living in an Antipus?

Shame, I always rather liked cats.....


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