Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Possible Duplicate:
[Singular] Is/Are [Plural]?

In this sentence:

The only exception are questions that are narrow enough that they can be reasonably answered definitively with one or two possible solutions.

Should it be "The only exception is" because "exception" is singular, or "The only exception are" because "questions" is plural?

share|improve this question

marked as duplicate by RegDwigнt Mar 12 '12 at 17:00

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

The default is that the verb agrees in number with its subject, so The only exception is . . . If that sounds awkward, you can write The only exceptions are . . . , which is probably preferable anyway, given that questions is plural.

share|improve this answer
2  
Or OP could sidestep the verb agreement issue by using, for example, "the only exception being questions that are..." He's probably need to terminate the preceding sentence with a semicolon to make it flow nicely though. –  FumbleFingers Mar 12 '12 at 16:40

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.