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- Note: the below discussion was moved from the Wiktionary:Tea room.
ref has three definitions, two presented as abbreviations and one as a noun - but the noun is defined as "short form of referee. Is there any reason why that would not be just a third abbreviation? bd2412 T 02:15, 21 November 2008 (UTC)
- maybe it's because ref is also a word in its own right, in that you can actually say 'ref' in spoken English. In contrast to, say, Chap (as in Chapter).--BodegasAmbite 10:00, 21 November 2008 (UTC)
- The other shortenings (for "reference" and "refectory") are more rarely spoken than "ref" for "referree". In my old-fashioned, wasteful U.S. way I would write the first two with a period but not the third. But in discussing preparing documents, I personally have said "refs", meaning references. The modern European approach to punctuation-less orthography for abbreviations eliminates such petty distinctions. Since we have so little usage in the US anyway and may be trending away from a US-oriented approach, I don't feel qualified to address this beyond providing the facts. DCDuring TALK 11:12, 21 November 2008 (UTC)