“vocabulary” (not to be confused with a previous post of mine)



In my young adulthood, I used to apply for jobs listed in the The New York Times’s help wanted section. I actually got several jobs that way.

In my thirties, I was working for a publisher and was unhappy there. I sent out a lot of resumes.

The help wanted ads would often specify: “include [in one’s response to the ad] salary requirements.”

I would dutifully do this. Later I found out that most job search counselors advise against this.

I would send a resume and cover letter to Box ___, The New York Times. I would end my cover letter with the following sentence: “I am seeking a salary of $13K per anum.”

Little did I know that the correct spelling is annum.

My high school Latin did not serve me well in this instance.





per anum

adverbial phrase

definition:  Through or by way of the anus, as in the administration of medication.



— Roger W. Smith
   September 2017

About Roger W. Smith

Roger W. Smith is a writer and independent scholar based in New York City. His experience includes freelance writing and editing, business writing, book reviewing, and the teaching of writing and literature as an adjunct professor. Mr. Smith's interests include personal essays and opinion pieces; American and world literature; culture, especially books and reading; classical music; current issues that involve social, moral, and philosophical views; and experiences of daily living from a ground level perspective. Besides (1) rogersgleanings.com, a personal site, he also hosts websites devoted to (2) the author Theodore Dreiser and (3) to the sociologist and social philosopher Pitirim A. Sorokin.
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3 Responses to “vocabulary” (not to be confused with a previous post of mine)

  1. Tom Riggio says:


  2. Funny. But I think that, in rigour, you should use the ablative in both cases and write “anno” or “per anno” in the first instance and “per ano” in the second – Both words belong in the second declination, so they inflect alike.

  3. … I see I was wrong before, since the preposition “per” requires the acusative. So it is as you say: “per annum” & “per anum”. I’m sorry for the mistake.

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