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Wednesday: April 19, 2006

Bad Latin Alert

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:54 PM GMT-0500

Mickey Kaus writes (April 19th, 5:20 pm):

. . . why should the L.A. Times probe into Burkle’s various nexes with prominent Democratic politicos?

“Nexes”? Eeeew! The plural of Latin nexus is nexus. No, the two forms are not identical: the singular has a short U and rhymes with ‘wuss’ and ‘puss’, while the plural has a long U and rhymes with ‘goose’ and ‘moose’. Of course, ‘various nexus’ would look and sound terrible in English, and ‘nexuses’ would be even worse. As with mongooses and octopuses (or octopodes), it’s probably best to avoid the plural entirely.

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