Friday, June 16, 2006

prah-sess-EZZ

Several years ago I wanted to start a web site documenting the many pseudointellectuals who pronounce the plural of process as “prah-sess-eez”.

Terry Gross is one, by the way. So is the intolerable Ira Flatow of NPR's Science Friday, who did so just now. Actually, NPR is rife with Seezers, as they may be called.

The confusion in their conventional wisdom-besotted minds stems from contact with words like parenthesis and basis, which are in fact pronounced in the plural with the unusual “-eez” ending. But note that you don't tack the suffix onto the original word: you drop the original -is ending and substitute another — in LATIN.

In process, we make the plural by adding the English plural suffix to the unmolested base word, resulting in processes, like blesses or confesses and similarly pronounced.

If this abomination unto the Lord is committed in my presence, I cannot be held responsible for my actions.

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