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意得輯觀點 Editage Insights - The difference between e.g., i.e., and name
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論文寫作:e.g.、i.e.和namely的差別


拉丁文縮寫在現今的研究寫作中越來越罕見:科學編輯理事會建議使用『and others』而不是et al.,還有用於引用來源的op. cit. 和loc. Cit 等以前常見的縮寫已經很少見到。不過還是能見到e.g. 的使用,有時會被錯誤寫成i.e. ,這次要來討論這兩者的不同還有它們跟另一個縮寫viz.,也就是『亦即』,的關聯。這三個縮寫都是用來解釋先前的字或詞,差別在於解釋性,是否包括例子、改述,或者列表,以下詳細說明。

“A number of weather variables were recorded, e.g. precipitation, temperature, and relative humidity.”中縮寫e.g. 代表拉丁文exempli gratia,意思是例如,在句子中的“variables”的例子為記錄過的變量,使用e.g. 的縮寫意味著句子中舉出的降水量、溫度和相對濕度不代表所有的變量,或許還有蒸發、日照時數、以及輻射強度。

如果需要解釋降水量,作者可以寫 ”Data on precipitation, i.e. rainfall and snowfall, were collected from local weather offices.” i.e. 是拉丁文id est,意思為『換句話說』,用在分隔兩個同樣意思的詞彙,而第一個使用的詞彙通常比較緊湊。

最後,如果所有成員都被提及,也就是列舉出的清單是完整的,而不只是象徵說明性的,則要使用namely 或它的拉丁文形式viz.。例如 “The present paper evaluates the effect of major weather variables, namely precipitation, temperature, and relative humidity, on crop growth.”這裡namely 明確指出該論文只有三項天氣變量評估,沒有其他如蒸發和日照小時數的變量。

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The difference between e.g., i.e., and namely


Latin abbreviations are increasingly rare in today's scientific writing: the Council of Science Editors recommends and others instead of et al. and such abbreviations as op. cit. and loc. cit., commonly used in citing sources, are seldom seen now.

However, the use of e.g. is not all that rare; sometimes, it is used, incorrectly, for i.e., and this blog post shows how the two are different and how they relate to another abbreviation, viz., which simply means namely.

What the three have in common is that all serve to elaborate the word or words that come before; where they differ relates to the nature of that elaboration, that is whether the elaboration consists of examples, rephrasing, or a list, as shown below.

Consider the sentence “A number of weather variables were recorded, e.g. precipitation, temperature, and relative humidity.” The abbreviation e.g. stands for Latin exempli gratia, which means for example. In the previous sentence, the term “variables” is explained by giving examples of some variables that were recorded. Used thus, the abbreviation implies that precipitation, temperature, and relative humidity were not the only variables recorded; perhaps evaporation, the number of sunshine hours, and the intensity of radiation were also recorded.

If the term precipitation needs to be explained, the author can write “Data on precipitation, i.e. rainfall and snowfall, were collected from local weather offices.” The abbreviation i.e. stands for Latin id est, which means in other words and separates two versions which mean the same, the first version being typically more compact.

Lastly, if all members of a group are to be named - an exhaustive list and not merely an illustrative one - namely, or its Latin form viz. is the correct choice. For example, consider the sentence “The present paper evaluates the effect of major weather variables, namely precipitation, temperature, and relative humidity, on crop growth.” Namely makes it clear that the paper is about the evaluation of only three weather variables, and not about any others such as evaporation and the number of sunshine hours.

Other similar words that are often confused are "including" and "such has." Read here to understand their usage better.
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