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Old October 3rd 05, 07:13 PM
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"Peter" wrote in message
[ . . . ]

There's no point in objecting to slang when it is used as such.
The slowly creaping respectability of the term is a relatively
recent phenomenon. I have dozens of books about photography,
only one, published in 2000, contains "prime lens" in the sense
of "fixed focal length lens." It would be interesting if someone
could dig up the earliest print uses in photography books.

I don't know whether it's the earliest, but I have somewhere--can't find it
at the moment--a book on the Minolta 600si by Thomas Maschke and Peter K.
Burian that uses the term "prime" to mean FFL. The book is part of the Magic
Lantern Guide series and (checking Amazon just now) was published in 1996.

What is interesting is that a book on the 700si etc. by the same two
authors, in the same series, published just a year or so previously,
covering the same subjects including lenses, does not use "prime" at all. So
from this I conclude that Maschke and Burian, who have written a number of
books on cameras, only picked up this "prime lens" thing c. 1995. (Amazon
gives only Burian as the author of the 1994 book, but I'm pretty sure my
copy--which I also can't find at the moment--lists both authors.)