This tag applies to questions that deal with grammatical number: “singular” versus “plural”, and (rarely) also “dual”.

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0answers
6 views

Plurals (and plural possessives) that end in s

What is the best way to make a word that already ends in "s" plural? Ex: Would the family of Mr Jones be "the Joneses" or remain "the Jones"? Also, what is the best way to make the plural form of ...
0
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1answer
50 views

plural noun with plural noun

I'm not sure what is the best title for this question. For example, Which of the followings is grammatically correct? (1) people with high IQs or (2) people with a high IQ and why? if (2) is ...
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3answers
51 views

Use of “there's” in plural

Well we know that is is the correct form for singular and are is the correct form for plural, right? As such "There is a great pizza place in Chicago" would be correct in prose or dialogue as would ...
14
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2answers
6k views

Plural form of 'schema'

Schema appears to have two plural forms that are both valid: schemata and schemas. Are they completely interchangeable; or are there any guidelines on which one is appropriate for particular contexts? ...
0
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1answer
112 views

Is this sentence grammatical: “all there is, are idiolects?” [duplicate]

Someone please explain why singular to plural to singular is correct. In my opinion, this makes no sense. Edit for clarification of what I'm asking: My point is that double linking verbs are not OK ...
12
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0answers
1k views

“They are Australian” vs “They are Australians” [migrated]

On the very first page of "Essential Grammar in Use" book of R.Murphy. He wrote Those people aren't English. They're Australian. My question are Is this sentence grammatically correct? What ...
2
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4answers
71 views

Proper use in singular: Life is better with a pet or a dog or pets?

I always though that proper sentence would be: Life is better with a pet. When you are referring to having only one pet and not generally mean what kind of pet. But all i find on google and even ...
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3answers
67 views

Are nouns used in “Types of <noun>(s)” singular or plural?

Take for example the word "liquid", which can be both uncountable and countable. Should it be - Types of liquid (There are many different types of liquid.) or Types of liquids? (There are many ...
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1answer
185 views

Adjectival noun - singular or plural or both?

If I intend to use a noun as an adjective, can I use the noun both in plural and singular form? e.g. "noun modifier", "Bacon Batch", "A news reporter", "Sports center", "email address" My feeling is ...
2
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1answer
72 views
+50

singular or plural? The whole of A & B is/are?

"The whole of society and the religious world was strongly impacted by this new religious view." What should be put here, "was" or "were"? How should this sentence be interpreted, and under each ...
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2answers
2k views

Origin of pluralisation of verbs and nouns in English

From this question, I was just wondering why plural nouns use the ending -s, while the exact same ending is used for the third person singular form of verbs. How did we get into this weird situation? ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

“Singular” vs “Uncountable” nouns

Today, searching for the term "cloak", I came across these definitions From Longman DOCE 5th Ed. cloak noun [singular] an organization, activity, or way of behaving that deliberately protects ...
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2answers
100 views

What is the plural of the name Jess? [duplicate]

I understand it's grammatically correct to use apostrophe s for the plural of letters. Dot your i's and cross your t's. But not for proper nouns that end with s. Here come the Jones's ...
0
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0answers
22 views

Plural or singularis?

The sentence: The reader has more knowledge than the characters in the short story: this is the very definition of suspense, and the effect of it works brilliantly I am not sure whether it is ...
1
vote
3answers
216 views

Is there a situation where an accepted uninflected plural variant is not available?

When would you use fishes instead of fish? The same goes for fruits and any other word where a different plural form exists but the singular is most commonly used for plural. I am looking for a ...
2
votes
1answer
258 views

Using an abbreviation for 50 pence pieces, 50ps or 50p's?

When using an abbreviation for a coin such as the english 50 pence piece it is 50 p. But how do we make this a plural? 50ps or 50p's? In the following context: I have nine 50 pence peices. In speech ...
-1
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1answer
30 views

Subject / verb agreement [closed]

None of the boys play / plays on the team. Each of us want/ wants to have a piece of the pie.
29
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7answers
3k views

Are there any words in English that have a plural with a separate derivation?

There are some irregular plurals in English (child/children, goose/geese), but all of the ones I know of share the same root word. In some languages, there are some irregular pairs where the singular ...
0
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2answers
82 views

How to say someone's home was something plural? [duplicate]

My true home were the streets of the suburb of XYZ. Not sure how to say that the streets (plural) were the home of a specific person. Using the word homeless would be against the intended ...
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3answers
3k views

Are there nouns that are always plural — have no plural counterpart?

Are there words that have no plural counterpart, because they are, in fact plural? Words like rice or scissors come to mind.
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2answers
2k views

Plural words/singular modifiers

Something I've always been confused about even as a native English speaker... Say, someone is discussing a concert and they say: "there was a huge amount of people there". Is this correct, or should ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

An exception are or is?

This is forbidden. An exception is/are situations where you... The word exception is singular but the word situations that follows is plural. Also I'm not sure what is the subject and what is the ...
0
votes
2answers
37 views

Which form is correct: “the fruits that no one likes” or “the fruits that no one like”? [closed]

Should "no one" be followed by the singular or plural form of "like"? I know that "no one" is generally followed by singular verbs, but would being preceded by a plural noun make this an exception?
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0answers
19 views

How to write (singular, plural) a list of terms in a sentence ending with respectively [duplicate]

I want to "factorize" a term (here, distribution) in a sentence, ending with respectively. "Gaussian distribution" and "Laplacian distribution" are precise, well-defined terms of the same kind. What ...
0
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0answers
30 views

Does a group have an earache or earaches?

If I have a pain in my ear, I will say "I have an earache." Now what happens if I am talking about more than one person? Would I say "They have an earache", or "They have earaches"?
4
votes
2answers
156 views

Why is the plural of reindeer sometimes “reindeer”?

Why is the plural of reindeer sometimes "reindeer"? Wiktionary has the following etymology: From Middle English, from Old Norse hreindýri ‎(“reindeer”), from hreinn + dýr ‎(“animal”). while the ...
2
votes
2answers
100 views

'serve the best interest of' or 'serve the best interests of'?

The sentence is Our vision is to become an employer of choice where our employees serve the best interests of the residents of our County. (Should it be interests or interest?)
0
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1answer
43 views

Plural or singular- is either correct?

We are losing our abilty/abilities to write. Abilities is 100% a word. True, it can be viewed as a shared thing in that we all have the one ability. But I think you could also say that it can be ...
0
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2answers
34 views

Is this sentence “I barraged him with an interview” grammatically correct?

"I barraged him with an interview." The above sentence sounds wrong to me. I feel like you should barrage someone with either a plural (such as "I barraged him with questions.") or one of those ...
0
votes
1answer
65 views

copulation with uneven noun-phrases

One can use the copula to connect noun phrases of different number. Example: The conversational topic that kept us pleasantly chatting was the different Southern dialects in the US. Here it ...
1
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1answer
23 views

Singular form of the verb when there are other verbs with ing

When you are writing a sentence like "embracing the variety of human beings brings you happiness", why do you have to write the verb in a singular form?
0
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0answers
15 views

Multiple memoirs about multiple authors' deaths

This sentence is from an image caption on the New Yorker's website: Memoirs rarely tremble with such life as when expressing their author's death. Why is it okay to say "their author's death" ...
2
votes
3answers
253 views

“They're using a cell phone” vs. “They're using cell phones”

The usage of singular and plural has always been confusing for me. I often see sentences like these People are using cell phones. People are using a cell phone. Does the first ...
1
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1answer
157 views

Plural modifying noun

Where can I learn about the English rules for noun phrases in which a modifying noun is semantically plural? We say "Horse trainer," not "horses trainer", even though there is usually more than one ...
1
vote
2answers
68 views

Appearances: Ambiguity in meaning

People care way too much about their appearance/ appearances? Google provides much more evidence for the singular but I have learnt not to trust it. In a formal essay I would opt for the plural ...
0
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1answer
34 views

Trying to explain why the use of “sites” is plural in a specific phrase

I have written and feel that it is correct because it is relating to fixed location (The Terracotta Army). This historical sites story is beautiful. But I am unable to explain to a colleague why ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

“On their back” or “on their backs”?

After the therapy, eight children (43%) became able to crawl/move on their back. Or should I use "on their backs"? Singular because each child only has one back, or plural because we're dealing ...
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votes
6answers
13k views

Types of things vs. types of thing

When speaking precisely or technically, one would say that "Homo erectus and homo sapiens are two species of hominid" rather than "Homo erectus and homo sapiens are two species of hominids." The ...
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0answers
48 views

Advice vs. Suggestion Why is the latter countable?

From an outsider, I think advice and suggestion have similar meanings. But I don't understand why the noun suggestion is countable whereas advice isn't. We can ask: Can you give me two or ...
13
votes
7answers
110k views

What is the plural of “equipment”?

What is the plural form of the word "equipment"? Is the word "equipment" singular? Context: for tools/objects
1
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1answer
45 views

agreeing articles and the noun in enumeration

I'm writing a technical paper, where I discuss the behavior of contacts between two slightly different materials. What is the correct way to write it: A contact between a green and a red balls A ...
0
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2answers
47 views

Should it be “there is a total of 378 vehicles” or “there are a total of 378 vehicles”? [duplicate]

I'm not sure if the subject is the total (in which case it would be "there is") or the vehicles (in which case it would be "there are"). I suppose another option would be to remove "total of" from ...
9
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6answers
6k views

What is the preferred plural form of “bus”?

The OED states that both "buses" and "busses" are acceptable plural forms of "bus". Is one generally preferred over the other?
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Should I use 'leitmotifs', the plural of leitmotif, in academic English?

Should I, in an scientific book, use the word 'leitmotifs', the plural of leitmotif? Some dictionaries seem to know it in the plural form, but does it sound very weird or massively pretentious to the ...
2
votes
2answers
64 views

Singular or plural for a compound subject with “and” but one part including the other?

This question is not a dublicate of "Singular or plural verb form where subject includes a 'parenthetical' element" since the latter discusses only compound subjects with "as well as". Is the ...
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0answers
16 views

Grammatical number in formulation of mathematical problems

Let's consider this sentence: 'Find the X of these triangles'. I presume both variants are correct, but which is more common and sounds better in the place of X: 'radii' ('radiuses') or 'radius'?
2
votes
2answers
73 views

What's the proper answer to the question “Is Eri's host family kind to her?”

A friend of mine is an Assistant Language Teacher at a junior high school in Japan. The textbook for the grade eight class has the question "Is Eri's host family kind to her?" If I were to answer ...
1
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1answer
35 views

Should “something, and therefore something” be referred to as singular or plural?

For example, if I have the sentence Due to the improvement of our algorithm, our model, and therefore simulation, becomes more realistic. Should the becomes be instead written as become? Does ...
1
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1answer
177 views

Plural or singular after “what … is / are + plural noun”

Example: "what the researchers are looking for is / are materials that ..."
6
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2answers
80 views

Is this correct: “Our listeners are what make X”?

I listen to a podcast that I like, but every episodes ends with Our listeners are what make [podcast name] possible. which makes me cringe a little each time I hear it. Is it just me, or is the ...