One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Logic. Asserting that at least one of a list of possibilities holds, while not ruling out the possibility that more than one holds. historical in later use (disjunctive now being the usual term).
Grammar. A disjunctive conjunction connecting two words or phrases which have the same referent.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in Thomas Stanley (1625–1678), poet and classical scholar. From sub- + disjunctive, after classical Latin subdisiunctīvus (in logic) partly disjunctive, in post-classical Latin also (in grammar) designating a type of conjunction, itself after Byzantine Greek ὑποδιαζευκτικός. With use as noun compare disjunctive.
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