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    #1

    Fibre Optic

    Hi, can anyone tell me why I say "fibre optic" and not "optic fibre"? If "optic" is an adjective and adjectives go before nouns in English - I'm confused.

    Thanks

  1. charliedeut's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Fibre Optic

    Hi,

    I believe this may be useful.

    charliedeut
    Please be aware that I'm neither a native English speaker nor a teacher.

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    #3

    Re: Fibre Optic

    So is fibre-optic is a compound noun?

  2. charliedeut's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Fibre Optic

    Quote Originally Posted by crazyaboutenglish View Post
    So is fibre-optic is a compound noun?
    No, it is an adjective (BrE spelling in the link).

    charliedeut
    Please be aware that I'm neither a native English speaker nor a teacher.

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    #5

    Re: Fibre Optic

    Optical fiber is the type of "wiring" used for fiber optics.

    Fiber optic communication is using optics (light) to send signals through special conductors of light, called fibers.

    So, the method of communication is fiber optics. "Fiber" is an adjective describing the noun "optics."

    The "wire" is optical fiber. "Optical" is an adjective and "fiber" the noun.

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    #6

    Re: Fibre Optic

    You said "Fiber" is an adjective describing the noun "optics." but every dictionary I look at says that fibre is a noun. Sorry to be so confused.

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    #7

    Re: Fibre Optic

    Nouns are frequently pressed into service as adjectives.

    For example, if I go on vacation to a spa, I could call it a "spa vacation." You can consider "spa" here as functioning like an adjective to modify "vacation."

    (Or you can consider the phrase as a "compound noun," if that is more understandable.)

    If I say I am a "bus driver," bus is acting to modify "driver."

    The point here is that "fiber optics" are a type of optics. While "optical fiber" is a type of fiber.

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    #8

    Re: Fibre Optic

    Ok now I understand, thank you!

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