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Crossword Help Forum
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chrise

22nd February 2013, 14:55
I have just read DEPENDANT in a New Scientist article. As I have always spelled it DEPENDENT, I looked it up in Chambers, which gives two alternative meanings - the first however gives dependAnt with dependEnt as an alternative; the second the other way round. (I won't prejudice your hoped-for responses by giving the meanings, though I will say they weren't very distinct from each other.)

Is there are distinction between DEPENDENT and DEPENDANT? If so, what is it?
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andyc

22nd February 2013, 14:57
I always believed that dependant related to the person!
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greedy kite

22nd February 2013, 14:59
............and as a noun rather than an adjective: dependants in the family context, I always understood.
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jazzgirl

22nd February 2013, 15:02
I have always thought that if one was dependent on something or someone, then one became a dependant.
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chrise

22nd February 2013, 15:03
Thanks to both
The phrase I read was "Neanderthals grew relatively rapidly and spent less time dependAnt on their parents".
It's a bit fuzzy, but if it were being used as a noun it should be "less time as dependants", shouldn't it?
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bernie

22nd February 2013, 15:05
That depends ;-)
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greedy kite

22nd February 2013, 15:07
Couldn't this be a liberty our cousins across The Pond take with the spelling? "NS" is originally U.S., isn't it --- or maybe the article you're reading, the author, or it's s'one more familiar with Am. scientific expressions written that way?
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chrise

22nd February 2013, 15:09
Good point, GK - the author is Canadian (though if it were incorrect, you would expect and English sub-editor to correct it?)
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chrise

22nd February 2013, 15:10
I missed the New Scientist reference - no, it has always been an English publication.
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jazzgirl

22nd February 2013, 15:11
Standards are slipping !
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