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Is a Euler or an Euler correct?

  1. Nov 29, 2012 #1
    Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Given the pronunciation sounds like "oiler", which article do we use?

    Couldn't find the grammar forum!:redface:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 29, 2012 #2
    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Since "oiler" begins with a vowel, it's "an Euler". In days of old, children would have known that even before they learned what an Euler is, as you can see in this playground song:

    What noise annoys an Euler?
    Oh tell me, tell me do.
    What noise annoys an Euler
    And gets him in a stew?
    Of all the noisy noises
    Along the sea and coast,
    I tell ya boys, a noisy noise
    Annoys an Euler most!

    (Okay, it should be "oyster" and not "Euler", but the principle's the same.) :biggrin:
     
  4. Dec 22, 2012 #3
    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Euler is a name, and hence it is a proper noun. In this case, we do not say "an Euler" because Euler is a person. Saying "an --" implies that there are multiple cases, i.e. more than one Euler. However, if the name is attached to some mathematical object, then you can say "an Euler constant," because there may be multiple cases. The Euler in this case is treated as a simple noun.
     
  5. Dec 22, 2012 #4

    Curious3141

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    No, there are instances when one may wish to use the phrase "an Euler". For example, "When will we see another genius the likes of an Euler, a Newton, or an Einstein?" is perfectly good grammar.

    And, as to the OP's question, it's "an" because the vowel sound used in the actual pronunciation is what matters in determining the indefinite article.
     
  6. Dec 22, 2012 #5
    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Unless you mispronounce Euler as many do. In that case, it's a Euler.
     
  7. Dec 22, 2012 #6

    Chi Meson

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    This sounds like an unique situation that deserves a honest answer.
     
  8. Dec 23, 2012 #7

    AlephZero

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Or conversely, the thing you put on the fire at Christmas is an Eul log.
     
  9. Dec 23, 2012 #8

    Curious3141

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Stop pouring Eul on the fire.
     
  10. Dec 23, 2012 #9
    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Wait. Are we talking about the mathematician Leonhard Euler, or his football player brother Houston Euler?
     
  11. Dec 23, 2012 #10

    Danger

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    Don't you mean Edmonton Euler, which is the only kind that counts?
     
  12. Dec 23, 2012 #11

    lisab

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    I had some deliciously Euley French fries the other day.
     
  13. Dec 23, 2012 #12

    I like Serena

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    Re: Is "a Euler" or "an Euler" correct?

    So I guess it's a Euclid element.
     
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