Word of the Weekend for July 14, 2013: Fungible

Word of the Day
1 :
being of such a nature that one part or quantity may be replaced by another equal part or quantity in the satisfaction of an obligation
2 :
3 :


Since fruits and vegetables are regarded as fungible in this diet, you are allowed a total of five servings of either or both.
“Oil is a fungible commodity and its prices are determined in the global market.” — From an article by Gal Luft in The Wichita Eagle (Kansas), May 30, 2013
“Fungible”—which derives from the Latin verb “fungi,” meaning “to perform” (no relation to the noun “fungus” and its plural “fungi”)—is a word that often shows up in legal and political contexts. Something fungible can be exchanged for something else of the same kind. For example, when we say “oil is a fungible commodity,” we mean that when a purchaser is expecting a delivery of oil, any oil of the stipulated quantity and quality will usually do. Another example of something fungible is cash. It doesn’t matter what twenty dollar bill you get — it’s still worth the same amount as any other twenty dollar bill. In contrast, something like a painting isn’t fungible; a purchaser would expect a specific, identifiable item to be delivered. In broader use, “fungible” can mean “interchangeable” or sometimes “changeable, fluid, or malleable.”

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