Discussion Forum

Please consider registering
guest

Log In Register

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —

  

— Match —

   

— Forum Options —

   

Minimum search word length is 4 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

Topic RSS
Cattle
What is the singular version of "cattle"?
Topic Rating: 0 (0 votes) 
2013/10/30
4:43pm
mbaretich
Member
Forum Posts: 4
Member Since:
2011/03/31
Offline
1
0

Cow? No, that’s for female cattle. Neat? Archaic! Head of cattle? Too many words.

2013/10/30
6:53pm
New River, AZ, USA
Member
Forum Posts: 792
Member Since:
2010/05/18
Offline

I’ve never heard anything used other than “cow” (which is technically incorrect, I know) and I grew up in Wisconsin with cows next door. So should you go with what is actually in use, or what is technically correct? In the latter case, I don’t think there is a singular form of “cattle” but “head of cattle” comes close. Check out this blog for an interesting take on your question:

http://motivatedgrammar.wordpress.com/2010/07/13/whats-the-singular-form-of-cattle/

 

2013/10/30
8:22pm
Dick
Fort Worth, TX
Member
Forum Posts: 398
Member Since:
2010/10/19
Offline
3
0

Thanks for the link, Heimhenge.   It made me decide that, for myself, I’ll use bovine. (I’ll probably forget in the heat of the moment.)

2013/10/31
12:39am
Ron Draney
Member
Forum Posts: 633
Member Since:
2009/03/06
Offline
4
0

There’s also kine, but that’s apparently a collective term.

On another forum some years ago, someone suggested cattlebeast. In fact, they suggested that they’d actually heard someone use it and asked if it was a valid term. At that time, I offered beef.

2013/10/31
1:44am
deaconB
Member
Forum Posts: 297
Member Since:
2013/10/17
Offline
5
0

Cow doesn’t just mean female, but a female that has given birth.   A younger, less-experienced female is a heifer.

 

Cattlemen who are not dairymen, refer to an individual a a beef, a group as beeves. Dairymen refer to a herd of cattle as cows, but they generally are females that have come fresh.   Males in the dairy breeds rarely see a birthday.

The word “cow” doesn’t necessarily mean bovine; it also is applied to bison, whales, and, I presume, other species.

2013/11/05
11:33pm
bettinocraxi
New Member
Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
2013/11/05
Offline
6
0

Thanks for sharing information,your information increase my knowledge.Your information very helpful for me.

2013/11/05
11:47pm
Ferd
New Member
Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
2013/11/05
Offline
7
0

Cattle can only be used in the plural and not in the singular: it is a plurale tantum. Thus one may refer to “three cattle” or “some cattle”, but not “one cattle”. No universally used singular form in modern English of “cattle” exists, other than the sex- and age-specific terms such as cow, bull, steer and heifer.

Forum Timezone: America/Los_Angeles

Most Users Ever Online: 1147

Currently Online:
13 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

Heimhenge: 792

Bob Bridges: 675

Ron Draney: 633

Robert: 439

RobertB: 423

tromboniator: 400

Dick: 398

samaphore: 312

deaconB: 297

dilettante: 287

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 608

Members: 2991

Moderators: 1

Admins: 5

Forum Stats:

Groups: 1

Forums: 1

Topics: 3172

Posts: 16815

Newest Members: Nancy, aerushing, Patzer, brienne77, McInbass, dsouthern36, tjintheville, jamiecordon, Uffda, LisaS

Administrators: Martha Barnette: 820, Grant Barrett: 1425, EmmettRedd: 653, Glenn: 1618, timfelten: 0