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medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

I'd like to register a vote for "nasturtia".  The concept of the -um, -a 
singular and plural seems to be fast disappearing from our language and I 
think it leaves us the poorer in our sense of roots.  I myself have trouble 
with data  and agenda and found myself guilty of using candelabra as a 
singular not long ago.  But when I got flack for using "millennia" in a book 
title rather than millenniums, my alarms really started flashing.  Can't we 
hold on to correct usage where it still exists?

Jo Ann McNamara
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "John Dillon" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2007 5:42 PM
Subject: Re: [M-R] Function of a Piscina or of a well


> medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture
>
> On Tuesday, March 13, 2007, at 3:34 pm, Anne Willis wrote:
>
>> And should the plural of piscina be piscinae,
>> rather than piscinas?
>
> The choice between an attested plural in a loan word's own language and 
> the general English-language plural in '-s' strikes me as a matter of 
> personal style and comfort, plus of course of one's sense of one's 
> audience.  _En famille_, I use 'nasturtia' as an English-language plural 
> of 'nasturtium'.  But in a garden club that usage might only cause 
> puzzlement and annoyance.
>
> Someone who is willing to insist on 'pyxides' as the plural of 'pyx' will 
> have no difficulty in demanding 'piscinae' rather than 'piscinas', no 
> matter how many anathemas this may provoke from others.  And perhaps even 
> from others who use 'anathemata' as the plural of 'anathema' in the sense 
> of 'imprecation' (to me, 'anathemata' are votive offerings).
>
> Best,
> John Dillon
>
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