Questions or inquiries relating to nouns that refer to a group as a whole.

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31
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9answers
32k views

Are collective nouns always plural, or are certain ones singular?

I'd say Microsoft have a way of bending the rules and I know that McLaren have won the championship. While this sounds strange, I believe it is correct English (sorry, I'm not native). But when it's ...
30
votes
3answers
1k views

Terms for collections of animals

As I watched the murder of crows sitting on the line above my house this evening, I got wondering where all of the collective nouns for animals (pod of whales, gaggle of geese, pride of lions) came ...
2
votes
2answers
40k views

Is “group” singular or plural? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is a company always plural, or are small companies singular? When I'm referring to a group of multiple things, should it be considered singular or plural for the ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Does modifying a collective noun with a number make the subject plural?

The word dozen is a collective noun, i.e., singular when we think of them as groups and plural when we think of the individuals acting within the whole. So we might say: Talking about eggs: "A ...
3
votes
6answers
5k views

In special cases, can you use “one such family are” vs. “one such family is”?

Is it correct to say "one such family are..." as opposed to "one such family is..." in some circumstances? Say, for instance, as used in this article on gene families: [...] One such family are ...
6
votes
4answers
7k views

Which is correct: “All the media is” or “all the media are”?

I think I know that media is a plural word. So then which of the following is correct? All the media is... All the media are... When you search Google, both seem to appear at the same ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Collective nouns and subject-verb agreement: general rule or arbitrary?

A newspaper ran this headline recently: (1) Police crack down on IAC protesters. [emph added] Why did it not read: (2) ? Police cracks down on IAC protesters. I have found instances of ...
19
votes
4answers
5k views

A murder of crows?

I love the subset of collective nouns known as the terms of venery. These are collective nouns specific to a particular group of animals. Some of the more inventive examples are: a murder of crows, a ...
9
votes
15answers
4k views

Simple word related to “a group of intellectuals” or “a group of smart learners”

What could be a good word for "a group of intellectuals" or "a group of smart learners"? Any suggestions of related terms also invited.
2
votes
4answers
290 views

Collective term for data sizes (bytes, kilobytes, megabytes etc.)

As you will probably work out from my profile, I'm a software developer. This is sort of a software development question, but I think this is more suited to English language too. Feel free to migrate ...
2
votes
8answers
748 views

Collective noun for “facts”

I'm looking to refer to a group of facts and I'm not sure what the best term to use for them would be. From what I can tell there isn't any sort of standard collective noun for facts, so it's going ...
25
votes
9answers
1k views

What is a collective term for castles, citadels, forts, palaces etc.?

We at Travel-SE are having an ongoing tag reorganization, and we're trying to find a collective term that encompasses the following: castles châteaux (which are really castles, but not every castle ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

Surely *some* wordsmiths must love America[ns]?

People who like/admire English or French (the languages and/or the people and their culture) are easily identified as Anglophiles or Francophiles. I'm not sure there are so many Germanophiles, but ...
8
votes
7answers
759 views

Are there meta-plurals beyond “peoples”?

The plural of "person" is "people". The plural of "people" is "peoples". Person-people-peoples is the only sequence like this that I know of, but I'm looking for another. (The equivalent question ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the collective noun for a collection of collective nouns? [closed]

murder : crows :: _ : collective nouns Sorry, no multiple choice this time.
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Conjugating verbs for nouns referring to groups of people [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is staff plural? Frequently when reading tech articles, I see sentences like "Microsoft have released ..." or "Apple have announced ...". This seems wrong to me because ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Collective Noun for Fire

What is the collective noun for fire? A ____ of fires. To clarify: This is actually a school curriculum text question and I have never heard of such a collective noun. This is an example I can ...
7
votes
3answers
320 views

Is ‘USAers’ just an ordinary English word today?

I saw the word, ‘USAers’ in the lead copy of Reuter’s news titled ‘Gippered’ in Time magazine (September 6), which says: “More than 1/3 of USAers say they are worse off under Bam. Warning-sign ...
4
votes
5answers
2k views

What is the “group name” for students who entered / left university in the same year?

For example, I entered my university in 2006, so I am a student of "grade 2006" (a direct translation from my own language). What is the proper English? Besides, I need the word for students ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the plural of “copy” when applied to the output of copywriters?

If a Copywriter produces several articles for printing, what are his works collectively known as? I feel the answer is not copies as this would indicate it is several articles reproduced from an ...
2
votes
1answer
163 views

Is this mixture of plural and singular legitimate?

But what is most important for our purposes is that these changes were the signal for the resumption of historical debate on a grand scale, of the kind that had been suspended or driven ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Collective noun “police” — singular or plural? [closed]

A newspaper ran this headline today: Police crack down on IAC protesters. Isn't the following more appropriate? Police cracks down on IAC protesters.
0
votes
1answer
43 views

Collective noun for words that describe something they themself contain or are

Is there a collective noun for words that describe something that this word itself contains or is? Here are some examples of what I mean: ‘noun’ is a noun itself; ‘háček’ contains a letter with a ...
0
votes
2answers
80 views

“Led Zeppelin was” vs. “Led Zeppelin were” [duplicate]

Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. (Source.) Is "were" really the right word here? It feels like it should be "was". After reading the answers and my own ...
0
votes
0answers
3k views

“India have won” vs. “India has won” [duplicate]

I would like to know when to use singular or plural verb agreement when talking about a country. E.g., India have won the match. India has won the match. Which statement is grammatical? ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

If collective nouns use the plural verb form, are they plural in other contexts too? [closed]

According to Wikipedia, in British English, it is generally accepted that collective nouns can take either singular or plural verb forms. How does this affect their property of being singular or ...