What is the pluralisation of “hyphen-minus”, and what’s the rationale for it?

If I pluralise hyphen-minus, is it “hyphens-minus” (like “attorneys-general”), or “hyphen-minuses”, and if it’s the latter, why is it different from the pluralisation of “attorney-general”?

Wiktionary suggests the latter, but it doesn’t explain its reasoning.


The rationale behind writing things like “attorneys-general” is that “attorney” is taken as the head noun, and “general” is taken as a postpositive adjective.

I don’t see a plausible analysis of “hyphen-minus” where “minus” is a postpositive adjective. To me, it looks like an appositional noun-noun compound (like Wikipedia’s example of “actor-director”: someone who is both an actor and a director): a hyphen-minus is a symbol that is both a hyphen and a minus sign.

Source : Link , Question Author : Andrew Grimm , Answer Author : herisson

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