https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

Why is yeux the plural of eyes when the singular is œil?

How did the plural and singular become irregular? What's the etymology behind the two?

August 9, 2017

16 Comments

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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrikhal

Searching for

why yeux

in Google, I found:

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

The second link doesn't work.

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrikhal

:(

I again got tricked:

  1. for not adding "http(s)://" at the beginning of the link.
  2. because the link contains an ampersand

Link corrected. However, searching in Google the mentioned two words allowed already one to find the link. ;)

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

Thank you for the help, jrikhal! We all make mistakes! :)

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

Thanks!

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-.Edwin.-

BTW, in Irish there are "bean" (woman) and "mná" (women).

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

And in English, there are cow and kine (archaic plural of cow).

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FrenchFireBird

I'm quite gullible, but is that actually a thing?

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/kine

kine PLURAL NOUN

archaic Cows collectively.

Only plural in English to not have any letters of its singular. But, maybe it doesn't count, since it is an archaism.

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kangourex

Un œil, des yeux Un ail, des aulx Un ciel, des cieux

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

According to word reference, http://www.wordreference.com/fren/ail, the plural is also ails.

And, "Le pluriel « aulx » est aujourd’hui vieilli ou régional".

Also, this doesn't explain the etymology of the two.

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrikhal

According to word reference, http://www.wordreference.com/fren/ail, the plural is also ails.

Indeed, cf. Larousse.

Similarly, about the plural of œil, see here.

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NtateNarin

I love the fact that the 2 words are different. I have trouble pronouncing the word "oeil" so I use "yeux" all the time. Of course, assuming there are multiple eyes.

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xamaranth

How do you pronounce œil?

Also - if you have the number pad, you can make the œ ligature with Alt + 0156.

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrikhal

How do you pronounce œil?

=> \œj\ (International Phonetic Alphabet), you can hear it here for example.

August 9, 2017
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