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Mantises or mantes or mantids, a discussion of the plural
Summary of the arguments
- Cartman suggests that is also an accepted spelling. Gothemasticator agrees but prefers the spelling in common use.
- Cartman suggests that "mantes" is to be preferred, because the word comes from the Greek, and this would be the Greek spelling. He offers this page as support. Gothemasticator thinks the Greek is irrelevant.
- Gothemasticator suggests that this is the spelling in common use and so should be used on The Vault. He offers wikipedia and theprayingmantis.org as evidence. Cartman rejects wikipedia as a source for common usage and provides several counter examples.
- Cartman suggests this as a compromise, citing National Geographic. Gothemasticator contends that mantids can only be used as the plural of mantid, not of mantis.
You can visit our respective talk pages for more verbiage, if not more information.--Gothemasticator 06:23, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
Please weigh in below. We do need to come to some consensus so that our articles can be uniform. Thank you.--Gothemasticator 06:23, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
Upon seeing the first edit involving the word 'mantes' my first reaction was along the line of "WTH, no." but I decided to look it up and fouund out about the three forms. I myself prefer 'mantises' because it comes to mind more immediately in this matter. Another concern of mine if how often the page will be edited, generally anons won't think twice about changing it from 'mantes' or 'mantids' if they think it's wrong, which could just lead to more edit disputes. Great Mara 06:36, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
I have looked over this source this page which I use for almost everything. In the definition, the first plural is indeed 'mantises' and a secondary is 'mantes'. From my years of English lit, when referencing a dictionary the preferred or common usage is always listed first. In this case 'mantises'. I vouch for 'mantises' as it is a common spelling and about 95% of the editors here (mostly anons or new accounts) will use this spelling. We also need to remember that most of Nat Geo's articles are worded with "proper or British" English. It has been noted before by Porter21 and in our policies that this site uses "American" English. My vote is for 'mantises' even though it may be proper, it is not common. There are several examples of "proper" and "what we use". Example would be that we say 'armor' instead of 'armour'. The latter is proper English. --Kingclyde 07:13, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
Would you say Octopusses? When you say mantises, in my opinion, you are disrespecting the origins of the word and the proper pronounciation. Mantises only fell into use because Mantes is too hard for people to grasp, I agree with Cartman and say Mantes should stay. kevobk 11:48, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
Mantises of Mantes
First thing I was thinking when I saw Cartman and Gothemasticator starting a discussion over the plural of mantis, was what I said on the forum page about admin responsibility definition and in particular about the hierarchy on the wiki. This is a very nice example for it. Cartman is providing good arguments for making it mantes, Gothemasticator is doing the same thing. I had expected Goth to already stamp his authority on this one at a certain point (halfway through the discussion I think). If I were a normal user (and also being and admin) I would have accepted and respected his decision anyway. Now it's going back and forth and causing more trouble then may be necessary. Anyway, I'm going with Goth, because it's more common and will be recognized easier by the visitors on the wiki. When they see mantes (mostly teenage kids I think), they think must be a typo and may change it to mantis. Also if it needs to be plural in Cartman's spelling you need to code it as [[mantis|mantes]], while in Goth's spelling you just add -es behind [[mantis]]. It's a bit easier and I don't think much of our young editors will think to code it as the first option. And according to my experiences almost only mantises is used on pages. So I have a preference for mantises.
- And I don't like mantids by the way. Jspoelstra
- I am indifferent to either as long as it is consistent throughout the pages. 17:28, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
Just to add to the discussion, all of these sources use mantid and mantis interchangeably, and thus it can be reasonably assumed that mantids can be applied to mantis as opposed to just mantid.      wikt:mantis
These sources also state that mantids can be used as a pluralisation of mantis. Note that some are using "mantids" to reference the praying mantis, not the order in general. Also, the final link also supports my claim that mantids is the term preferred by professionals in the fields involved.    
And the final source outright declares mantises as grammatically incorrect, citing octopi as a common language error (which is also in common usage and is not "correct"). 
Also, I need to press something here. As "giant mantis" isn't one particular species (including the likes of the "Zion mantis") using mantids is more accurate. And using Gothemasticators own wikipedia source, "Historically, the term "mantid" was used to refer to any member of the order because for most of the past century, only one family was recognized within the order; technically, however, the term only refers to this one family", and as the mutated insects are clearly members of the Mantidae famly (note, this is not the same thing as the "Mantodea" order) they can be referred to correctly as mantids with scientific accuracy. -- 20:28, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
- Problem with source 11. Ends in .co.uk. Great Mara 20:37, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
- Find me a difference between "American English" and English that dictates this exact area is different and I will believe you that this is a problem. If you are speaking from a regional perspective however, I can see where you are coming from but the opinions appear to be as varied across the United States as they are in Britain. -- 21:04, June 13, 2011 (UTC)
Ausir's find above that "mantises" is the in-game usage would seem to trump all other considerations. I think we can consider this matter closed.--Gothemasticator 21:21, June 13, 2011 (UTC)