If you have two, is it “Tales of Two Cities”?
J. Stapley | Email | Homepage | 05.06.05 – 7:37 pm | #
That’s why you just say BOMs
Bret | Email | Homepage | 05.06.05 – 8:50 pm | #
No offense, but I’d believe the journalist, since they tend to be fairly affluent in English grammar, right?
Annie | Email | Homepage | 05.06.05 – 9:44 pm | #
What Joey said: it’s “copies of The Book of Mormon”.
Silus Grok | Email | Homepage | 05.06.05 – 9:53 pm | #
I was in an apartment with a missionary that thought this was raelly important and basically implied we were off the strait and narrow if we said anything but copies of the Book of Mormon. I figure that since there are no other instances of the words book and mormon being used in the plural together, we really don’t have to worry about it. There is next to no possibility that anyone would ever misunderstand us. In fact, I think in this context, not even non-members would misunderstand.
I’m an English professor if that makes any difference, though I’m not sure it should.
Steve H | Email | Homepage | 05.06.05 – 10:16 pm | #
Reminds me of the old story from the Onion:
William Safire Orders Two “Whoppers Junior”
NEW YORK–Stopping for lunch at a Manhattan Burger King, New York Times ‘On Language’ columnist William Safire ordered two “Whoppers Junior” Monday. “A majority of Burger King patrons operate under the fallacious assumption that the plural is ‘Whopper Juniors,’” Safire told a woman standing in line behind him. “This, of course, is a grievous grammatical blunder, akin to saying ‘passerbys’ or, worse yet, the dreaded ‘attorney generals.’” Last week, Safire patronized a midtown Taco Bell, ordering “two Big Beef Burritos Supreme.”
ed | Email | Homepage | 05.07.05 – 1:52 am | #
I’m with Joey.
Kim Siever | Email | Homepage | 05.08.05 – 12:42 am | #
With journalists, it much more likely to be an effluent than an affluent.
Mark B. | Email | Homepage | 05.08.05 – 9:38 pm | #
As the “smart sister” who thought she had it figured out at age 10, you’ve at least made me think. But I’m not convinced yet. If you wrote “The Book of Rusty” and wanted 500 copies, you would then say, “I need 500 Book of Rustys”? (Or would that spell “Rusties”…)
You say yes; I say that sounds utterly silly. You need 500 Books of Rusty.
I understand the concept of it being a title, as in “A Tale of Two Cities” NOT being pluralized as “Tales of Two Cities.” So then you would say “I need two ‘A Tale of Two Citieses’”? Okay, yucky example. Let’s say it was originally entitled “A Tale of One City”… so now you’re going to say “I need two ‘A Tale of One Cities’”? (Or, I need “A Tale of One City”s?)
Thank you, Joey, for the solution: I will now say “copies of the Book of Mormon” until further evidence proves my brother (or me?) wrong!
Amy | Email | Homepage | 05.11.05 – 4:20 pm | #
I can’t resist jumping on the pedant pile:
It is, unequivocally, “copies of the Book of Mormon.”
Justin H | Email | Homepage | 05.12.05 – 11:54 am | #
Better affluent than effluent I say. (see comment #4)
BD | Email | Homepage | 05.18.05 – 2:11 pm | #
I’ve generally gone with “copies of….”
If one has twenty DVDs of the movie Alien (only watched through ClearPlay, of course), would it be correct to say, “I have twenty Aliens”? If so, how does one explain that one has twenty copies of the sequel? “I have twenty Alienses”?
If I write a novel called It’s the Princess’s, and my mother buys two copies, would she have two It’s the Princess’ses? And if she was talking about the covers of the books, would she refere to It’s the Princess’ses’s covers?
Eric James Stone | Email | Homepage | 05.18.05 – 2:55 pm | #
You all have way to much time on your hands.
The journalist is correct. A proper title is pluralized at the end of the title – however, for the sake of phonetic clarity, coppies of the Book of Mormon would be more easy on the ears. Just as one would say copies of A Tale of Two Cities. Though in that instance, because the the proper title is already in the plural, you would not pluralize it again. One could say – “I have three Tale of Two Cities.”
gilgamesh | Email | Homepage | 05.18.05 – 4:33 pm | #
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