“Math” vs. “Maths” and Why Mathematics has an ‘S’ on the End
This is a video from the very talented Brady Haran who, among other channels, produces phenomenal videos such as this one over at Numberphile, which you can subscribe to here. You can also follow Brady on Twitter here.
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It doesn’t have an S on the end, you european people are just weird!
I’m from Australia and we use the same address numbering systems the UK but usually No. 15 is opposite No.16. In my home town, Hobart, a new development was built at the beginning of a street and it was named ‘Zero Davey St.’
We also have the thing where in tall buildings we call the street level floor ‘Ground’ or ‘G’ in the elevator or lift then the first floor is above it. Some buildings skip the 13th floor.
In rural areas your address is the No. of metres your house is from the beginning of the road so emergency services vehicles zero their trip metre when the turn into the road and don’t have to mess about looking for letter boxes.
I too believe it is just a matter of speech idioms across the Atlantic. However it has always interested me how speakers from different regions of a country place varying emphasis on vowel sound. I live in a mixed industry metropolitan area of North Carolina USA with a lot of influx of people moving to the area for jobs. In the same day of travel for work I hear sharply annunciated ‘yankee’, to mushy nasally ‘west coast’, to slurred speaking ‘hood ebonic’, to drawly ‘deep south’ English.
I personally don’t find the dialects offensive or a source of derision, I rather enjoy them.
My personal favorite is ‘deep south’. To quote the late Lewis Grizzard, “God talks like we do, …”.
The reason Americans don’t use the letter ‘s’ on the end of maths, is because for some reason they moved it on to the end of the word Lego ;^/