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Grammar (ref index/indexes/indices) and appendix quesrtion

  1. Nov 11, 2006 #1

    1) when i have more than 1 liquid, do i say "I'm going to measure the refractive index of these liquids. These liquids' refractive indexes..." or "..refractive indexes.." or "refractive indices of these liquids"?


    If i have to write an appendix, is it standard to do for example, appendix 1 for a list of URLS, appendix 2 for table of results and 3 for graphs or something?

    or is it just 1 appendix?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 11, 2006 #2


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    Some say "they aren't using their brains" and some say "they aren't using their brain". But one could say "they have brains but aren't using them" but could probably not say "they have a brain but aren't using it", although one could say "they each have a brain but aren't using it". I think this other use is a case where the word 'each' has been dropped, but it is probably incorrect.

    So I think it would either be "... the refractive index of each liquid" or "... the refractive indexes/indices of the liquids". I think this second use is called 'plural quantification', but I couldn't tell you more about it.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2006
  4. Nov 12, 2006 #3
    I'd say go with multiple appendices. Appendix 1, Appendix 2, etc. Separate appendices would be clearer for the reader.

    I'd also say go with the "refractive indices of the liquids are measured in this experiment" or "The refractive index of each liquid is shown in Table Z" I think "indices" is the best for plural use. I've never heard of using "indexes"... but it could be because I'm a dumb American, maybe the English think differently. :uhh:
  5. Nov 12, 2006 #4


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    "...these liquids' refractive indices..." is correct, and so is "...the refractive indices of these liquids.".
  6. Nov 12, 2006 #5

    I'll stick with refractive indicies!
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