Pleural vs. Plural

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Pleural and plural are two words that are pronounced in the same manner, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. They are homophones. We will examine the meanings of the words pleural and plural, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Pleural means having to do with the pleura, which is the thin membrane lining the thoracic cavity and surrounding the lungs. Pleural is an adjective. The word pleural is derived from the Greek word pleura, which means rib or the side of the body and the suffix -al, which is used to transform a noun into an adjective.

Plural means more than one of something, being composed of more than one of something or someone. The word plural may be used as a noun or an adjective, it is derived from the Old French word plural which means more than one, derived in turn from the Latin word pluralis.


According to Dr. Bharadwaj, through bronchoscopy the bronco pleural fistula was identified and closed with autologous blood patch. (The Hindu)

Of the recent or current residents, one had been diagnosed with lung cancer and two with pleural plaques. (The Canberra Times)

Among the 20 words on the list are ones with Latin origins, making them notoriously difficult in plural forms. (The Daily Mail)

A legislative proposal taking aim at already-illegal polygamy in Utah drew hundreds of plural families—including reality TV stars—to protest on the steps of the State Capitol Friday in the rain, chanting they are “families, not felons.” (The Salt Lake City Weekly)

“The existential reality of modern India is a plural society of immense diversity devoted to the realisation of the objectives and ideals in the Preamble of the Constitution.” (The Economic Times)

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