Author Topic: The plural of octopus  (Read 392 times)

Offline Talk Merit

The plural of octopus
« on: August 17, 2018, 02:45:24 PM »
We all know that an octopus has eight tentacles, but supposethere are eight of the animals - what is the plural? The standard English plural is octopuses ( sometimes misspelt as octopusses ), but the word is derived from the Greek word oktṓpous, and thus the plural should be octopodes. This usage is pretty rare, and the assumption that it is of Latin origin is far more common. In this case the plural isassumed to be octopi. However, if the word had come from the Latin, it would be derived from octopes (eight footed), and the plural should be octopedes.

Isn't English fun! So after all that, I would suggest that you use the common form of octopuses,rather than any of the affectations.