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Need for DU adjudication: "incidences" is it a word?

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Twillig Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 08:10 PM
Original message
Need for DU adjudication: "incidences" is it a word?
Or is it akin to "irregardless?"

My bias may be apparent, but I gotta know.

btw. What about "wild hair?"

I say HARE. Getting one of those up your fundament would be a more critical situation than a measly hair. Unless the 'wild hair' turns into a pylonidal cyst that gets you outta the Vietnam war...

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nothingshocksmeanymore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 08:15 PM
Response to Original message
1. Irregardless is a double negative but has been adopted by the
unabridged dictionary of late.

entry found for incidences.
incidence ( P ) Pronunciation Key (ns-dns)
n.
The act or an instance of happening; occurrence: did not expect criticism and was surprised by its incidence.
Extent or frequency of occurrence: a high incidence of malaria in the tropics.
Physics.
The arrival of radiation or a projectile at a surface.
Angle of incidence.

Incidences likewise, is in the dictionary although I would have suspected it was incidents.

Wild hare may be correct but I will prefer to use wild hair since even thinking about a hare up my ass gives me a headache in my rectal sphincter.

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oneighty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 08:15 PM
Response to Original message
2. No.
Not in my dictionary.

180
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 08:15 PM
Response to Original message
3. Well, I think it's "incidents"
"incidences" is like a hyper-correction. The real thing doesn't sound quite right somehow so the speaker pumps up a nonword.

Actually, i think it is "wild HAIR".


I'll have to get out my OED to be certain. But it's in the van right now.
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WannaJumpMyScooter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 08:21 PM
Response to Original message
4. incidence is one of those words that can be singular or
plural. there is no need to add to it.
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SOteric Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 08:31 PM
Response to Original message
5. It's not incorrect, and it is a valid word, but
it's not the 'preferred' usage by most style guides.

'Incidence' already tends to imply either a singular event or multiple events.

As in "The incidence of frequency can be correlated to coffee consumption in the workplace," -where you're discussing more than one event.

And as in "I would have offered complaint, but there was no further incidence," -where the implication is for any singular subsequent event.

It can be necessary and correct, however to use 'incidences' in some contexts:

In equal incidences there is a considerable inequality of refractions. --Sir I. Newton.

So, in this sentence, Newton is actually referring to 2 sets of incidence and the plural is made the only logical choice.
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