In shoe and shoes, canoe and canoes, the o is sounded slenderly, like oo; but in doe or does, foe or foes, and the rest of the fourteen nouns above, whether singular or plural, it retains the full sound of its own name, O. Whether the plural of two should be "twoes" as Churchill writes it, or "twos," which is more common, is questionable.
Most writers, however, think proper to insert a hyphen in the terms here referred to: as, he-bear, she-bear, the plurals of which are he-bears and she-bears.
But I find no evidence at all of the fact on which these authors presume; nor do I believe that the regular possessive plural was ever, in general, a syllable longer than the nominative.
The plural of legumen is legumens or legumina; of stamen, stamens or stamina: of cherub, cherubs or cherubim; of seraph, seraphs or seraphim; of beau, beaus or beaux; of bandit, bandits or banditti.
Formerly, the plural was hosen: "Then these men were bound, in their coats, their hosen, and their hats.
The plural of gallows, according to Dr. Webster, is gallowses; nor is that form without other authority, though some say, gallows is of both numbers and not to be varied: "Gallowses were occasionally put in order by the side of my windows.
Thus, a council, a committee, a jury, a meeting, a society, a flock, or a herd, is singular; and the regular plurals are councils, committees, juries, meetings, societies, flocks, herds.
12.--Respecting the plural of nouns ending in i, o, u, or y, preceded by a consonant, there is in present usage much uncertainty.
Let the general term be man, the plural of which is men: A man--one unknown or indefinite; The man--one known or particular; The men--some particular ones; Any man--one indefinitely; A certain man--one definitely; This man--one near; That man--one distant; These men--several near; Those men--several distant; Such a man--one like some other; Such men--some like others; Many a man--a multitude taken singly; Many men--an indefinite multitude taken plurally; A thousand men--a definite multitude; Every man--all or each without exception; Each man--both or all taken separately; Some man--one, as opposed to none; Some men--an indefinite number or part; All men--the whole taken plurally; No men--none of the sex; No man--never one of the race.
If the singular cannot now be written gass, the plural should nevertheless be gasses, and the adjective should be gasseous, according to Rule 3d.
Thus the plural of Koan, snow, would be koanad; of ais, shell, aisad; moaz, moas, moazad, &c. Variety in the production of sounds, and of proper cadences in composition, might dictate retention of a certain class of the dissyllables--as ossin a stone, opin a potato, akki earth, mejim food, assub a net, aubo a liquid, mittig a tree, &c., the plurals of which would be assinad, opinad, akkid, mejimad, assubad, aubad, mittigad.
The Good Authority resulted from his friendship with Ben-Zayb, when the latter, in his two noisiest controversies, which he carried on for weeks and months in the columns of the newspapers about whether it was proper to wear a high hat, a derby, or a salakot, and whether the plural of caracter should be caracteres or caracteres, in order to strengthen his argument always came out with, "We have this on good authority," "We learn this from good authority," later letting it be known, for in Manila everything becomes known, that this Good Authority was no other than Don Custodio de Salazar y Sanchez de Monteredondo.