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Thread started 22 Dec 2009 (Tuesday) 12:05
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I it a lens or a lense?

 
HoosierJoe
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Dec 22, 2009 12:05 |  #1

I notice that some people use one spelling and some another.

Lense gets flagged by my version of Word. But if you look it up, you find ...

drum roll please ...

It' could be both!


Merriem Websters does not recognize "lense".

Dictionary.com does. Thefreedictionary.com does.

Yourdictionary.com does not.

Cambridge does not.

Websters-online calls "lense": "LENSE" is a common misspelling or typo for: Lease, Lens, Lenses, Lese, Lines

So that's two for and a bunch against.


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advaitin
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Dec 22, 2009 12:08 |  #2

So many people misuse the language that it becomes accepted by some lexicographers, but I think that having a reference to its misuse does not necessarily condone the usage. It should always be "lens" singular and "lenses" plural.


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JeffreyG
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Dec 22, 2009 12:09 |  #3

Lens is correct. A few dictionaries will allow 'lense', but it is telling that many either do not list it or note it to be incorrect.

Adding to your list, I believe the Oxford cites 'lens' as correct.


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GSH
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Dec 22, 2009 12:12 |  #4

It is Lens.

Here endeth the (English) lesson.


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JelleVerherstraeten
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Dec 22, 2009 12:12 |  #5

I think on a forum about photography, people will understand what they are talking about ;-)a.

But it's a strange thing why some dictionaries use it and others not..


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Anke
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Dec 22, 2009 12:13 |  #6

Just because you take the "s" off of "lenses" to make it singular doesn't make "lense" a word. But anyway, we all know what you're talking about and most people here don't have English as their first language so no-one minds.


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TSY87
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Dec 22, 2009 12:16 |  #7

it appears to me that based off of your research, the free online only dictionaries are the only ones that "allow" it.

"lense" is not the correct spelling, and honestly, just because people commonly misspell the word doesn't justify it being "added" into dictionaries as a correct form of the word.


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tkbslc
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Dec 22, 2009 12:26 |  #8

I would bet 90% of current "correct" English is derived from formerly misspelled words. Languages evolve and change.

With texting becoming the primary mode of communications, in 30 years there will be a post like:

"DNT U NO tht LENS s not a WRD - Its 'LNS' - LOL!"


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rvdw98
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Dec 22, 2009 12:26 |  #9

It will get a lot weirder if dictionaries keep adopting misspellings. More than once I've come across posts referring to a "len" (singular) and "lens" (plural). And those terms were used consistently throughout the poster's history, so they were not just one-off typos.

At least "Lense" and "lens" are still pronounced the same way, but a "len"? :rolleyes:


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GSH
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Dec 22, 2009 12:30 |  #10

tkbslc wrote in post #9245506 (external link)
I would bet 90% of current "correct" English is derived from formerly misspelled words. Languages evolve and change.

With texting becoming the primary mode of communications, in 30 years there will be a post like:

"DNT U NO tht LENS s not a WRD - Its 'LNS' - LOL!"

At that time i will happily volunteer as a mod and dish out bans like confetti at a wedding :D


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HoosierJoe
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Dec 22, 2009 12:58 |  #11

advaitin wrote in post #9245411 (external link)
So many people misuse the language that it becomes accepted by some lexicographers, but I think that having a reference to its misuse does not necessarily condone the usage. It should always be "lens" singular and "lenses" plural.

pej⋅o⋅ra⋅tion  [pej-uh-rey-shuhn, pee-juh-] Show IPA
–noun
1. depreciation; a lessening in worth, quality, etc.
2. Historical Linguistics. semantic change in a word to a lower, less approved, or less respectable meaning. Compare melioration (def. 1).

That addresses the phenomenon of word change meaning over time. Not sure what addresses word spelling changes. But according to Encyclopdeia.com "Although the pronunciation of English has changed greatly since the 15th cent., the spelling of English words has altered very little..."

So, it looks like it is "lens", like it or not!



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HoosierJoe
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Dec 22, 2009 13:00 |  #12

rvdw98 wrote in post #9245509 (external link)
It will get a lot weirder if dictionaries keep adopting misspellings. More than once I've come across posts referring to a "len" (singular) and "lens" (plural). And those terms were used consistently throughout the poster's history, so they were not just one-off typos.

At least "Lense" and "lens" are still pronounced the same way, but a "len"? :rolleyes:

Wish I had 50 cent for every time I saw that.



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elContrarian
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Dec 22, 2009 13:02 |  #13
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Some dictionaries would say that you can use lens and lense interchangeably. It is partially true.

If you're talking about a single glass element, then it's either lens or lense, though lens is preferred.
If you're talking about photography, then a tube with many glass elements, it's a lens. Never a lense.




  
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JeffreyG
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Dec 22, 2009 13:03 |  #14

HoosierJoe wrote in post #9245694 (external link)
That addresses the phenomenon of word change meaning over time. Not sure what addresses word spelling changes. But according to Encyclopdeia.com "Although the pronunciation of English has changed greatly since the 15th cent., the spelling of English words has altered very little..."

So, it looks like it is "lens", like it or not!

The language changes as new words are taken from other languages or invented new, not from people spelling stuff wrong.

You can 'Google' that to use a verb that has entered the language of late.


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scepticswe
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Dec 22, 2009 13:08 |  #15

As pointed out, languages continuously evolve. I´m sure that in "Ye Olde" books on optics, the word lens may very well have been spelled differently than today. On topic, I also agree that the word "lense" is simply wrong and should not be used. After all, most words tend to evolve into simpler ones ("olde" changed to "old"); "lense" and "lens" would be the other way around.

For the die-hard purists out there, I recommend the Dictionary of Old English (external link)


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I it a lens or a lense?
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