Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Axis, Axes, Axii?

While writing another post (it will probably follow this one) I needed to pluralize axis. None of the guesses I came up with passed the spell checker so I Googled it. The first hit I got was from a drafting company. (Interesting aside: word order matters in Google more than I realized - searching for "plural axis" didn't get the same dictionary oriented results as "axis plural") According to these folks the answer is:

Grammatical Note :

The plural of axis is axes. Some radical etymologists insist that the plural form of axis is axii, but that is only if there are three or more;

One axis, two axes, three axii.

The word axii, however, still doesn’t pass the spell checker, so perhaps getting grammar lessons from a drafting company isn’t such a great idea. More legitimate authorities simply list axes as the plural.

If you do visit the above link to drafing company, can you answer me a question, what the heck are those diagrams depicting. It looks like some weird condom construction set.

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