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I know that document is an uncountable noun.

But I see some people write

A lot of documents were found.

Which is correct?

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closed as general reference by Jasper Loy, Matt E. Эллен, MrHen, Daniel, kiamlaluno Nov 7 '11 at 19:48

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

For that sentence, documents is the obvious choice.

A lot of document were found.

The above is incorrect; were is for a pluralized noun. As well, a lot of can only be used in front of a pluralized noun. For it to be proper English, you must pluralize documents.

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Rather than being an uncountable noun, document is indeed countable. It is used as an example of a countable noun in keio.ac.jp/~hjb/countable.uncountable.html and in 1-language.com/englishcourse. Thus "A lot of documents were found" exhibits correct grammar, although some English teachers frown upon "A lot of" and would recommend "Many documents were found" instead.

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Perhaps the OP was thinking of documentation rather than document. –  Peter Mortensen Nov 4 '11 at 8:25

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