I was reading Professor Harry Wolfson's "Maimonides and Halevi", and I came across the sentence, "The test of individual perfection is the perfect harmony or coincidence...".
I was puzzled for a moment; obviously, by "coincidence" he meant two things being present at once, or overlapping, but the choice of words was peculiar. For a moment, I was going to chalk it up to obsolete vocabulary (this essay is about 100 years old), but then I realized:
coincidence, with the "cid" pronounced as "Sid".
coincidence, with the "i" in "cid" pronounced as in "Eye"
With the former pronunciation, it means co-incident, "incident" as in "happening", occurrence; the two things happened at once, usually by chance.
With the latter pronunciation, it means two things coincided, i.e. were as one, united, joined.
Now, I bet these both have a common origin (coincide + ence, the act of coinciding), but since then, we've tended to use "coincidence" in the former sense, of two things happening at once by chance. But doesn't the latter sense (viz. two things being joined, or present together, unified) make sense, once pronounce the vowel differently?
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