Sunday, October 17, 2010

Just Checking

Live long enough and you'll discover plenty of changes in your language.  In fact language is a living, vibrant thing reflective of the society of the day.   Vulgar becomes merely colloquial becomes fully accepted.

The question I've got concerns one of my lifelong interests, aircraft.   To me, "aircraft" was one of those nouns that was at once singular and collective.  Example - "that's a splendid aircraft," or, "the Allies lost 65-aircraft last night over Berlin."   What I don't get is how a perfectly suitable "aircraft" was transformed into "aircrafts."   There, even my spellchecker is choking on that one.

Consider this news service item about Bombardier introducing two new ships to its lineup:

"The Montreal-based company announced the aircrafts Saturday and said they will be more fuel efficient than current models."  (Oh dear, I think my spellchecker is becoming apoplectic).

This wouldn't bug me if it was the first time I'd run into this but it seems to be happening an awful lot lately.  So, tell me, what gives?


Anonymous said...

Language has a life of its own.

Anonymous said...

aircrafts is the plural when you're talking about multiple types of of aircraft?