Definition of Data

Data: Facts, statistics, and the like. In medicine and the health sciences, people often speak of "the data" erroneously in the singular. "Data" is a plural noun and takes a plural verb, as in "the data are very convincing." It comes from the Latin "datum", meaning "a thing given."

For the Romans
data were surely plural
but we fear that,
for lack of Latinists,
data now is often
sadly singular.


Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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