Publication Date



Technical Report: UTEP-CS-23-43


Traditional logic has two main connectives: "and" and "or". A natural question is: which of the two is more frequently used? This question is easy to answer for the current usage of these connectives -- we can simply analyze all the texts, but what can we say about the past usage? To answer this question, we use the known linguistics fact that, in general, notions that are more frequently used are described by shorter words. It turns out that in most European languages, the word for "and" is shorter -- or of the same length -- as the word for "or". This seems to indicate that in these languages, "and" was used more frequently. The only four exceptions are languages of the British Isles and of Greece, where most probably "or" was used more frequently. In this paper, we propose a possible explanation for these exceptions.