i.e. vs. e.g.

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by wegs, Aug 21, 2016.

  1. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    A friend of mine was telling me the correct usage of this earlier, and I was surprised to know that I've been using this incorrectly for quite some time! I tend to use these interchangeably, but that is wrong.

    ''i.e.'' = that is or in other words

    ''e.g.'' = for example

    If you've made the same mistake, you're not alone.

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  3. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

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    Thanks... hard to remember but interestin.!!!
     
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  5. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    I never use "e.g." but I can see how you could use "i.e." for both in some cases and still be correct. Sometimes you use it for "in other words" and sometimes you use it when you use an example for other words.
     
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  7. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Well actually, ''i.e.'' is supposed to be used when rephrasing a particular statement in order to make it clearer, and ''e.g.'' is to be used for listing examples. ''i.e.'' really shouldn't be used when listing examples of something, if we want to be precise about it.

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  8. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

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    The mnemonic I always used (which I made up myself and so may not make much sense to others) is to think of i.e. as "in effect" and then e.g. is an eggsample... I know, but it works for me

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  9. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I must say I had always considered these abbreviations mutually exclusive. I do not see how an example of something can also be something just restated in different words. So I'm with wegs on this.

    Incidentally, as no one seems to mentioned it so far "i.e." is from the Latin "id est", which means "that is", while e.g. comes from "exempli gratia", which is a bit more complicated to understand in translation but means something like "for the sake of example".
     
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  10. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    Another example of a word for rock, i.e. stone is stone.

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  11. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Very clever! But a bit contrived.

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  12. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    Haha...I'm just kidding. Wegs is correct and I'm just trying to find my wiggle room.

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  13. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Between a rock and a hard place, you are. Or a stone.

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    lol
     
  14. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    But, as we learned, at least I'm clever.

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  15. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    I see that none of you scholars bothered to find out what words "e.g." and "i.e." are abbreviations for!

    I.e. is the Latin abbreviation for id est, which is a similar phrase to English "that is."

    E.g., on the other hand, is the Latin abbreviation for exempli gratia, which means, more or less, "here's an example."
     
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  16. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    exchemist bothered

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  17. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I see you did not bother to read the thread before responding, arf, arf.

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  18. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    Many years ago a teacher told us that e.g. does NOT mean "example given" - but it is a good way to remember what it means.
     
  19. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Sorry I missed that!
     
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  20. Walter L. Wagner Cosmic Truth Seeker Valued Senior Member

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  21. geordief Registered Senior Member

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    i.a is inter alia (among other things)
    a.a is just "arf ,arf"

    Your Latin is actually wrong but that would be tmi

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  22. Walter L. Wagner Cosmic Truth Seeker Valued Senior Member

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    Mater, estne cena parata?
     
  23. geordief Registered Senior Member

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    No ,and I ain't your ma

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