interim » in-term

Variant(s):  in term

Classification: English – cross-language

Spotted in the wild:

  • It seems that Kenneth McKay does not think that we have to do an in-term report. (Scottish Parliament, Local Government Committee, 28 February 2000)
  • Grants received last year - progress report due 2/1, Grants received two years ago - in term report due 3/1,Grants received three years ago - final report due 4/1 (link)
  • Even if you were to (by some stroke of genius) able to release an in term report before the next election, it could be shelved as un-official and so still money well spent. (C-ByteDirect)
  • Onsite, managed teams set up and run Web Server systems on an in term basis while staff are recruited, or for longer periods. (link)

I have frequently heard this in spoken use (as in “we have to submit an in-term report after 6 months and a final report at the end of the project”), but was never quite sure if this was just a mispronunciation. However, a Google search turned up 105 examples of “in-term report”, showing that at least some people believe this is the correct spelling. There were 4,460,000 hits for “interim report”. The eggcorn version does make intuitive sense - it sounds like a report that one writes within the term of a project, as opposed to a final report that you write when the project is finished. The actual derivation is of course from Latin, “ad interim” = “in the mean time”.

_[Edited and posted, CW, 2005/11/14.]_

| link | entered by alecmcclay, 2005/11/14 |


  1. 1

    Commentary by Chris Weimer , 2006/01/14 at 12:13 am

    Pardon, but the Latin is actually “interim” sine “ad”. I suppose that “ad interim” itself would be considered an eggcorn, since the -im ending is the old accusative ending for -is nouns, however, it has been an adverb since antiquity.


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