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Is the pluralization of Latin words accepted or even correct, unlike the pluralization of those coming from other languages?

For example, "sono stato in due bars" would sound odd in Italian, but it's quite common to hear someone correcting somebody else for saying "i curriculum" instead of "i curricula" (the correct Latin pluralization for this noun).

Is this addressed by any linguistic reference? Is it more of a cultural issue instead?

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No, pluralization of the Latin words, as well as any other foreign words is generally not accepted in Italian (e.g., memorandum, referendum). Il curriculum/i curricula makes a famous exception (see Accademia della Crusca); though, there are some modern dictionaries that suggest i curriculum.

From La Grammatica Italiana di Dardano e Trifone (Zanichelli, 1995, p. 194):

«Le grammatiche e i dizionari sono abbastanza compatti nel consigliare il mantenimento della forma del singolare anche al plurale».
The grammar rules and dictionaries unitedly recommend keeping the singular form also as plural.

Italiano di Serianni (Garzanti, 1997, p. 106):

«In che modo formano il plurale i nomi stranieri terminanti in consonante? In generale, il nome resta invariato»
What is a plural form of the foreign words ending with a consonant? Generally speaking, the word remains unchanged.

Italiano, Corso di sopravvivenza di Birattari (Ponte alle Grazie, 2000, p. 250):

Vale per le parole latine quel che si è detto per le parole straniere in generale: in italiano sono invariabili. Quindi il plurale di curriculum è i curriculum.
What is said above is valid for the Latin words in the same way as for other foreign words: in Italian, they don't change. Thus, the plural form of curriculum is i curriculum.

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    There is also a slightly confusing comment about it in Enciclopedia dell'Italiano (2011): "Quanto ai latinismi, è buona norma formare i loro plurali secondo le norme morfologiche latine: curriculum → curricula, lectio magistralis → lectiones magistrales, a meno che non si tratti di latinismi moderni, che restano invariati: gli album, i referendum, gli sponsor." I didn't include it in the answer because a) I can think of very few examples of such a "good practice"; b) I can't think of "sponsor" as a Latin word, even as a modern Latin word. – I.M. Nov 6 '13 at 23:21

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