Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?


[ploo r-uh l] /ˈplʊər əl/
consisting of, containing, or pertaining to more than one.
pertaining to or involving a plurality of persons or things.
being one of such a plurality.
Grammar. noting or pertaining to a member of the category of number, found in many languages, indicating that a word has more than one referent, as in English men, or more than two referents, as in Old English ge, meaning “you.”.
noun, Grammar
the plural number.
a form in the plural.
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin plūrālis, equivalent to plūr-, stem of plūs plus + -alis -al1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for plural
  • It began life as a plural object pronoun and evolved into the whole enchilada: subject and object, singular and plural.
  • My current bugbear is use of the bare apostrophe to show possession, after something other than a plural.
  • Actually, because of the origin of the name, the plural form of octopus is octopods.
  • Even if a story is true, remember that the plural of anecdote is not data.
  • Languages also differ in the ways they distinguish between singular and plural nouns.
  • Other languages conscript the plural to perform tasks less important.
  • If you are speaking about generic fish the plural is fish.
  • There are two words and either of them can be plural or singular.
  • But as they say on the fora, the plural of anecdote is not data.
  • Interestingly, many languages have different plural affixes indicating this distinction.
British Dictionary definitions for plural


containing, involving, or composed of more than one person, thing, item, etc: a plural society
denoting a word indicating that more than one referent is being referred to or described
  1. the plural number
  2. a plural form
Derived Forms
plurally, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Old French plurel, from Late Latin plūrālis concerning many, from Latin plūs more
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for plural

late 14c., from Old French plurel "more than one" (12c., Modern French pluriel), from Latin pluralis "of or belonging to more than one," from plus (genitive pluris) "more" (see plus). The noun meaning "a plural number" is from late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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plural in Culture

plural definition

The grammatical category in nouns, pronouns, and verbs that refers to more than one thing. Most nouns become plural with the addition of -s or -es: hats, chairs, dishes, countries, and so on. Some nouns form the plural in other ways, as in children, feet, geese, and women. (Compare singular; see agreement.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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