If you have ever second-guessed yourself on what the plural form of focus was and also wanted to learn more about the word, it’s grammar, it’s history, and plenty of examples of it used in a sentence, this article is practically made for you!
What Is the Definition of Focus?
According to Merriam-Webster’s English dictionary, the word focus has these definitions and uses.
- A center of activity, attraction, or attention; epicentre
- The primary focus of the meeting was drug abuse
- Put immigration into focus as a hot topic for commentators
- A point of concentration
- Directed attention
- The focus is on helping the homeless
- A focus group on homelessness
- The team lost focus
- A state or condition permitting clear perception or understanding
- adjustment for distinct vision
- also: the area that may be seen distinctly or resolved into a clear image
- Focal Length
- a point at which rays (as of light, heat, or sound) converge or from which they diverge or appear to diverge; a convergence of light; ellipse
- specifically: the point where the geometrical lines or their prolongations conforming to the rays diverging from or converging toward another point intersect and give rise to an image after reflection by a mirror or refraction by a lens or optical system
- a point of convergence of a beam of particles (such as electrons)
- : one of the fixed points that with the corresponding directrix defines a conic section
- : a localized area of disease or the chief site of a generalized disease or infection
- : the place of origin of an earthquake or moonquake
- in focus
- : having or giving the proper sharpness of outline due to good focusing
- get the binoculars in focus
- out of focus
- not in focus
- Focus – Verb
- Transitive verb
- to cause to be concentrated
- focused their attention on the most urgent problems
- to adjust the focus of (the eye, a lens, etc.)
- focus the telescope
- to bring into focus
- The results of that research were focused for classroom presentation.
- to bring (something, such as light rays) to a focus: CONCENTRATE
- to cause to be concentrated
- intransitive verb
- to concentrate attention or effort
- focus on the most pressing needs
- to adjust one’s eye or a camera to a particular range
- Newborn babies cannot focus for several months.
- to come to a focus: CONVERGE
- Transitive verb
What Is the Difference Between Focus and Foci?
The word focus comes from the Latin language. As it is with many Latin words used in American English today, there is more than one correct an acceptable plural form. The Latin way of making focus plural is foci whereas the American English way is focuses. The more commonly academically accepted word is foci, so for papers or homework, it would be the best idea to use that for the plural form of focus.
The History and Origin of the Word
You can trace the roots of the word to the Latin focus. It originally meant a hearth or fireplace. Later in New Latin, it took on the scientific meaning to focus rays of light by using a glass lens. The way they got from fireplace or hearth to focusing a lens of glass was because they noticed the glass lens (magnifying glass) was able to catch paper on fire when it concentrated the beam of light to a fine point. The descendants of the original Latin include focar (Spanish), fuoco (Italian), fokus (German), foco (Portuguese), and foc (Romanian).
Example Sentences of the Word in Context
- The legal status has gained popularity in recent years amid a rise in sustainable investing and growing investor focus on environmental, social and governance factors. — Kristin Broughton, WSJ, “Lemonade CFO Promotes Do-Good Status, Path to Profitability to New Investors,” 30 Aug. 2020
- Successful streamers typically have an intense focus on tactics and analyze gameplay — sharing random observations on all aspects of life as well. — Maya Tribbitt, Bloomberg.com, “Gamers Reap Millions From Twitch-Fueled River of Record Cash,” 29 Aug. 2020
- Stack pointed to the spike in new cases that came after Memorial Day and the Fourth of July as a reason the extra focus on precautions is needed during holidays. — Emma Austin, The Courier-Journal, “Kentucky reports 825 new COVID-19 cases in fourth-highest total yet,” 29 Aug. 2020
- The Republicans’ focus on law and order relegated the pandemic to the background, hardly noticeable in the sea of maskless faces coming together for Trump’s in-person acceptance speech on the White House grounds. — Briana Bierschbach, Star Tribune, “Party conventions set ominous tone for November election,” 28 Aug. 2020
- Harris’ focus on policing contrasted with the speech delivered Wednesday by Vice President Pence, which highlighted prosecutions of those responsible for vandalism and destruction. — Tim Perry, CBS News, “Staring down Trump, Kamala Harris says she stands with protesters on racial equality,” 28 Aug. 2020
- The Trump administration’s focus on trade has drawn the nation’s attention away from a major contributor to the decline of blue-collar manufacturing work in the United States: technological change. — Mike Watson, National Review, “Joe Biden, Union Buster,” 28 Aug. 2020
Synonyms of Focus From a Thesaurus
- Axis – a straight line about which a body or a geometric figure rotates or may be supposed to rotate
- Base – the starting point or line, foundation
- Center – the point around which a circle or sphere is described
- Core – a central and often foundational part usually distinct from the enveloping part by a difference in nature
- Cynosure – the center of attraction or attention
- Epicenter – the part of the earth’s surface directly above the focus of an earthquae
- Eye – attention, notice, close observation, point of view, something central
- Ground zero – the point directly above, below, or at which a nuclear explosion occurs, the center of origin of rapid, intense, or violent activity or change
- Heart – the central or innermost part
- Hub – the central part of a circular object, the center of activity, the focal point
- Locus – a center of activity, attention, or concentration
- Mecca – a place regarded as a center for a specified group, activity, or interest
- Navel – the central point, a depression in the middle of the abdomen that marks the point of former attachment of the umbilical cord or yolk stalk
- Nerve center – center, source of leadership, organization, control, or energy
- Nexus – connection, link
Now you are no doubt an expert on using the correct plural form of the word focus and hopefully also took away a lot more about the word and how to use it in the English language.