European and other courts' jurisprudence are?

< Previous | Next >

Fiwen Greenleaf

New Member
Filipino
Hi all,

I'm editing this text about European jurisprudence. Normally, since "jurisprudence" is an uncountable noun, I would use a singular verb for it. However, there's this sentence in the text that says

"European and other courts' jurisprudence are full of regulatory verdicts."

So I changed "are" to "is." However, it is being marked as a grammatical error by the spell and grammar check on MS Word. And now this is making me doubt. Should I indeed use "are" in this case? I already pondered on using "European courts' jurisprudence and other courts' jurisprudence" to retain the plural verb, but it doesn't sound natural. Any opinion on this, please?
 
  • GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    The original is not very good; you really should not use the s+apostrophe plural possessive here. I would prefer "The jurisprudence of courts both in Europe and in other regions is full of regulatory verdicts."
     

    Fiwen Greenleaf

    New Member
    Filipino
    Thank you, GreenWhiteBlue. However, I don't have the liberty to deviate that far from the original text. But your suggestion is good :thumbsup:
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    I think you are entirely correct and you should ignore Microsoft's recommendation. Replace "European and other courts'" with "their" and see what you get:
    Their jurisprudence is full of regulatory verdicts
    Their jurisprudence are full of regulatory verdicts​
    Native speakers don't always agree on this forum, but I'd be interested to see if anyone defends 'are'.

    I agree with GreenWhiteBlue that the original is awkward, but not to the extent that I would have avoided it myself. It does save a lot of explanation.
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    Heh, heh. Ignoring anything by Microsoft is probably a good policy.
    I would certainly not defend "are" here, unless you could contrive to speak about (plural) jurisprudences. But that wouldn't really work either.
    Deviating slightly less from the original than GWB's suggestion, how about "The jurisprudence of European and other courts is full of.."?
    Even that sounds wrong, because "jurisprudence" is really the wrong word for this context.
    Regulatory verdicts lie within the domain of practice. They are things that actually happen within the legal system.
    Jurisprudence, on the other hand, is more abstract and theoretical. It's about knowledge, skill, science, and philosophy of law, or the legal system itself, unsullied by mere reality.
     

    Fiwen Greenleaf

    New Member
    Filipino
    Hi, Edinburgher! That's actually what I did. I'm glad someone else thought of that construction. Anyway, I think what the author meant about jurisprudence in the sentence was "case law." And, indeed, you're right about jurisprudence being theoretical and all that. And actually, even the most renowned authors of legal texts use "jurisprudence" this way.:(:eek:o_O
     
    jurisprudence:

    a body or system of laws. RH unabr.


    -----
    It would seem to be able to take the plural with 's'. (Here, I disagree with Edinburger.)

    The jurisprudences of Europe and China differ. {plural verb}.
    --
    [Real-life example]
    From Recognition to Reconciliation: Essays on the Constitutional ...

    Patrick Macklem, ‎Douglas Sanderson - 2016 - ‎Constitutional law
    That incrementalism certainly did not help; however, the national jurisprudences of Aboriginal title are far from the only instances of the common law working itself into highly awkward and contorted doctrinal shapes that serve the legal profession well, whilst not necessarily making its pathway explicable to others.

    ====
    Likewise, I believe this works:

    European jurisprudence and Chinese jurisprudence are very different.

    ====
    Can it be singular and take a plural verb, as (BE)

    The football team were proud to collect the football kit and discussed tactics whilst watching Charlton play. @CAFCTrust @CAFCofficial
    ===

    The OP example, though, does not seem to work. Agree with Edinburger.
     
    Last edited:

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    Yes, I think "case law" would fit well. When you say renowned authors use the term "this way", did you mean they use it to mean "case law" too, like the author you're editing?
     

    Fiwen Greenleaf

    New Member
    Filipino
    Yes, the authors (who are often lawyers, judges, justices or members of international organizations, among others) use jurisprudence to mean "case law." I could suggest changing it to "case law" or change it then send a query afterward, but "jurisprudence" used in that sense is prevalent, and perhaps even already accepted, in legal texts.
     
    Last edited:

    Fiwen Greenleaf

    New Member
    Filipino
    It would seem to be able to take the plural with 's'. (Here, I disagree with Edinburger.)

    The jurisprudences of Europe and China differ. {plural verb}.
    I haven't seen jurisprudence used in plural form, but it would help if you can provide authority for this, like a link to a dictionary or to a reliable website that uses this. I have to have some basis to present.

    Likewise, I believe this works:

    European jurisprudence and Chinese jurisprudence are very different.
    This is actually the construction that I was trying to avoid. But your suggestion is appreciated. :)

    Can it be singular and take a plural verb, as (BE)

    The football team were proud to collect the football kit and discussed tactics whilst watching Charlton play. @CAFCTrust @CAFCofficial
    I don't think this is a matter of American vs British usage. But I wonder what others have to say on this.
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    Can it be singular and take a plural verb, as (BE)

    The football team were proud to collect the football kit and discussed tactics whilst watching Charlton play. @CAFCTrust @CAFCofficial
    No, I think that is something entirely different, where a team (singular) comprises several individuals (plural).

    I haven't seen jurisprudence used in plural form, but it would help if you can provide authority for this, like a link to a dictionary or to a reliable website that uses this. I have to have some basis to present.
    OED does nor explicitly state one way or the other, but none of the quotes use the plural, including one from 1818 where the plural might have been used:
    2. A system or body of law; a legal system.
    1818 H. Hallam View Europe Middle Ages II. viii. 191 The difference between our Saxon and Norman jurisprudence.​
     
    No, I think that is something entirely different, where a team (singular) comprises several individuals (plural).

    OED does nor explicitly state one way or the other, but none of the quotes use the plural, including one from 1818 where the plural might have been used:
    I think the correct inference is that the plural is quite ordinarily formed by adding 's'. Online Oxford for example, with 'knowledge' has no examples of the plural.

    Here are plural examples:

    https://research-repository.griffith.edu.au/bitstream/handle/10072/19459/44712_1.pdf?sequence=1

    INTRODUCTION
    This article concerns the development of alternative jurisprudences of tech-
    nology. It argues that the re-imagined television series
    Battlestar Galactica exposes jurisprudence ’s existing reliance on the metaphysics of
    technology that internalizes technology as
    techné and externalizes it in favour of a more essential human condition.
    ==============



    ===
    [PDF]The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Constitutional [Law]... - ResearchGate


    /Thus, for example, judges on the European Court of Human Rights often consider the
    national constitutional jurisprudence in the relevant field—for example, free speech—of states that are party to the Convention. Conversely, constitutional judges in the latter states frequently consult decisions of the European Court both for purposes of conforming the respective jurisprudences where feasible and of taking into account valuable judicial insight on the issue at hand. / (p. 19)

    /Specifically, some argue that basic principles of constitutional law are essentially the same throughout the world.
    Accordingly, the principal goals of comparative analysis are to identify and highlight the common or universal principles and to determine how particular constitutional jurisprudences do, or may be made to, conform to those principles. / (p.25)


    (Multiple instances throughout the book)
     
    Last edited:

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    I think the correct inference is that the plural is quite ordinarily formed by adding 's'. Online Oxford for example, with 'knowledge' has no examples of the plural.
    I agree it isn't conclusive, and in any case, OED is not the Guardian of the English Language and often lags behind current usage.

    However, 'knowledge' might not be the best comparison. The OED has several quotes for 'knowledges', and the plural form or use as a count noun is mentioned in the corresponding definitions (or, in one case, a footnote to the definition).
     
    I agree it isn't conclusive, and in any case, OED is not the Guardian of the English Language and often lags behind current usage.

    However, 'knowledge' might not be the best comparison. The OED has several quotes for 'knowledges', and the plural form or use as a count noun is mentioned in the corresponding definitions (or, in one case, a footnote to the definition).
    Since I don't have OED access, it was the best available. The point is that from an absence of examples, one has a shaky basis for inferences about the editors' views of usage. (We can't say, "There's no example of it, so we can assume we're not to do it.")

    Oxford University Press, on the other hand, furnishes some examples cited my post #15.
     
    Last edited:
    < Previous | Next >
    Top