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

learn more… | top users | synonyms (6)

5
votes
1answer
132 views

Are the cats and dogs of the idiom “it's raining cats and dogs” plural in usage?

I recently heard someone say the following: It's cats and dogs out there! As in "it's raining cats and dogs out there." I then thought that person should have said Those are cats and dogs ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Is 'couple' ever used in the sense of 'some'?

Is the usage of the word couple (as in, "I want to ask a couple of questions...") to mean 'some' or 'few' correct (as in, interpreting given example to mean "I want to ask a few questions")? As a ...
0
votes
1answer
340 views

Plural of title of form name

I am writing a letter referencing a document title. I have several of the same document that I need to include the title of the documents in the letter. Do I write "please find six Form 2322" or ...
-1
votes
0answers
42 views

What's the plural for the letter 'a'? [duplicate]

Many people (including me) do not know what the plural of the letter 'a' is, so please if you know, comment on this context. Thanks.
0
votes
1answer
28 views

Who is trying to improve their future or who are trying to improve their future?

'Is' and 'their' don't mix well... But I have heard people saying 'Don't bring up the past of a person who is trying to improve their future.' Is it correct? Or should it be 'Who are trying to' ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

Subject/Verb plural/single Agreement With A Dependent Clause

Please consider the following spoken sentence. A few things I noticed is she likes red and she hates green. Spoken, this sounds very correct, but if you analyze the sentence - the subject ...
0
votes
0answers
24 views

How to use apostrophes of possession [on hold]

I am not sure if the apostrophe of possession is in the right place. I have written I can remember the childrens' names but not the adults' names.
0
votes
2answers
184 views

Is this question grammatically correct?

Something seems off about this sentence, but I can't put my finger on it. The sentence in question: Which countries is Nicaragua competing with? Alternatives I considered: With which ...
0
votes
2answers
89 views

What is the best time / are the best times for a meeting?

I'm about to arrange a meeting with a person. I have a feeling that when I say "What is the best time for a meeting?", I'm sort of forcing them to come up with one option only. I'd like to show them ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

Help with Plural Objects and Subjects

I know to use 'is' for singular and 'are' for plurals. I was recently listening to a song and it reminded me of a 'rule' a teacher once told me about. The chorus repeats: Line 1: BIG GIRLS CRY WHEN ...
5
votes
0answers
49 views

“One of the document's properties” or “One of the documents' properties”? [duplicate]

The context of this question is that I am trying to say that "The properties of one of the documents" is/are well-known by the students. For that meaning, which of the following should I use: ...
6
votes
1answer
31k views

What is the proper title abbreviation for addressing multiple people?

I'm writing a letter to several recipients in the same document and want to address them correctly at the start. Is the following correct (I suspect not) and if not, what should it be: Dear Mr's ...
16
votes
5answers
65k views

Is using “fruits” as the plural of “fruit” acceptable?

I've always understood the plural of fruit to be fruit, not fruits. I was looking at some marketing material and they used the word "fruits" in the following context: A unique infusion made with ...
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Grammar: was vs. were [duplicate]

I've been looking into the difference between was and were...I think I understand it, except in this particular context. For those of you aware of the TV show "My Family", there is a scene containing ...
-3
votes
0answers
31 views

Some questions(7) [closed]

A few.......people are starving all over the world. Why "million" and not "millions" ? We have to make a summary of...... . Why "chapter three" and not "the third chapter"? Their office is in a ...
1
vote
2answers
249 views

Grammatical correctness of a sentence

Recently I read a sentence - The French Rooms, at least until modern periods are reached, are a demonstration that in the sphere of aesthetics, science does not produce the greatest artists - that ...
3
votes
1answer
28 views

when writing a noun that shows a parenthetical plural suffix option, is it, “policy(ies)” or policy(s)"? [duplicate]

When writing a noun that shows a parenthetical plural suffix option, which is acceptable, "policy(ies)" or policy(s)" ?
1
vote
1answer
2k views

“Couple was” or “couple were” married?

I have recently read both: couple is getting married couple are getting married So which is actual usage?
12
votes
5answers
36k views

What is the plural of “scenario”?

What is the plural of "scenario"? I have always used "scenarios", but have recently come across "scenaria" and "scenarii". Should I be treating it as an Italian or Latin word?
-3
votes
1answer
29 views

Possibility or possibilities? [closed]

which sentence is correct? Asia provides the best within-region diversification opportunity as it is more economically diverse compared to Europe and the Americas OR Asia provides the best ...
0
votes
1answer
27 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
388 views

Can I use a plural last name as my company name? [closed]

So let’s assume my last name is Norton and I’m starting a publishing company. I want it to be “Nortons, Limited”. It is quite common to use plurals in company names — for example, Waterstones, ...
1
vote
2answers
51 views

“Time” versus “Time”: When is time plural?

I have difficulty in using time and times correctly. I understand that times may be used for some idiomatic purposes such as "at all times" or "of all times" or "some times", although sometimes it ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

Smoking, drinking and eating are not allowed

I live in Bangkok and on the intercom in the subway they constantly say Smoking, drinking and eating are not allowed. To me it sounds weird. I’d say Smoking, drinking and eating is not allowed. ...
-1
votes
5answers
6k views

“Travel” vs. “travels” [closed]

My question is about the formation of a plural form of the noun travel. I have a folder on my PC that contains the photos from my different travels (France, Germany etc.), I want to create a folder ...
-1
votes
1answer
39 views

Collective Noun: Is the possessive with “children” singular or plural? [duplicate]

Which is preferred: Children will have their picture displayed. OR Children will have their pictures displayed. The actually photographs of children not drawings
9
votes
4answers
3k views

Is the plural form of “Mercedes” a disused word?

In the picture below: 1) are there two Mercedeses? Or, 2) are there two Mercedes? Can we infer from this nGram that the plural noun "Mercedeses" is a disused word, hence the sentence 2) ...
4
votes
1answer
54 views

Letter E as indication of plural

There is something that is puzzling me: how does etymology explains why the letter E has became a representative of plural? Tooth - Teeth Foot - Feet Man - Men Woman - Women Goose - Geese I ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

which is better, “deformation” or “deformations”? [closed]

This is for a thesis title so I want to be sure it makes sense. Would it be more correct to write: "defects and structural deformations" (plural); as in, there are a number of possible ...
1
vote
2answers
60 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 ...
-1
votes
1answer
28 views

Criteria is plural, of course, but

I know that criteria is plural, but I am trying to explain a situation in which possibly the set of criterion should be considered singular. In this situation, the set of criterion, called Criteria ...
-1
votes
1answer
32 views

Questions Regarding ‘Their' [closed]

I have some sentences and I’m not sure which ones are correct and which ones are not. They have their phones in their hands. They have their phone in their hands. They have their phone in their ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

Struggling with Plural/Singular?

Which of the following is a grammatically correct statement? The value of cars depreciate over time. The values of cars depreciate over time. The value of cars depreciates over time. Thanks!
0
votes
1answer
32 views

Plural form of abbreviation ending with “s” [duplicate]

I am wondering how can We pluralize the abbreviation "TS" (Training Sequence)? Is it " TSes" or "TS's", I think It can't be "TSs"
9
votes
2answers
368 views

sewer or sewers

I was playing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the NES when I stopped to ponder; when in a place full of sewage, am I in the sewer or am I in the sewers? Mayhaps both? Also on further use of the root ...
-2
votes
2answers
74 views

Is “their futures” acceptable?

Is the following phrase grammatically correct? I am confused about the position of the adverb successfully and if the term future can be pluralized. . . . successfully prepare all students for ...
20
votes
5answers
9k 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
264 views

woman vs women plurality

I hope this is not ridiculous to ask (and I will try to focus on a question, rather than discussion) but have I missed something regarding the use of the word women to refer to a single person? I have ...
0
votes
0answers
10 views

Proper grammar for plural possession including myself? [duplicate]

I know that when referring to myself and a friend, it is proper to say "John and I", as opposed to "me and John". But when referring to ownership, I can't figure out whether this still applies. For ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

Is it “set A or B” or “sets A or B”?

Here is my sentence: The report further identifies two partial sets, which are not in themselves default sets but which one can—wholly or partly—combine with default sets A or B, or ...
11
votes
1answer
557 views

Data is/are in a global context

I have been commissioned to script a series of brief videos on the importance of data accuracy and consistency. The videos are directed to employees of a company with offices around the ...
18
votes
6answers
5k views

Time and tide wait for no man

In the old proverb: Time and tide wait for no man. Our first record of the proverb is from St Marher in 1225: And te tide and te time þat tu iboren were, schal beon iblescet. When it was ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

What are the plural forms of the words “octopus” and “platypus”? [duplicate]

I've seen "octopuses" and "platypuses", respectively, but I've also seen "octopi" and"platypi". Which is correct, and why?
1
vote
1answer
39 views

Can “thing” refer to a group (plural)?

Consider the following sentence: People are the most valuable thing a computer has ever encountered. Since "people" is plural, should I use "things" instead of "thing"?
0
votes
1answer
53 views

“Who has” or “Who have” when referring to a collection of people in a department [duplicate]

I have spoken with Education Unit who has requested a contract. I have spoken with Education Unit who have requested a contract. Which of the above is most acceptable in British English?
0
votes
0answers
28 views

Hoard of bugs was/were squashed? [duplicate]

Is hoard of bugs to be treated as singular or plural? ...and what we mean by that is that a hoard of bugs were squashed relentlessly in this release ...and what we mean by that is that a ...
8
votes
1answer
5k views

Possessive form for words ending in “y”

Which of the following is correct? The fortune 500 companys' assets are vast. The fortune 500 companies' assets are vast.
2
votes
2answers
39 views

horde or hordes [closed]

When should I say "a horde" and when should I say "hordes"? Would "hordes of brain-hungry zombies" be more zombies than "a horde of brain hungry zombies"? Or is one of these options incorrect? Is it ...
0
votes
1answer
24 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
30 views

The topic is/are smart homes [duplicate]

What is correct? 1.) The topic is smart homes. 2.) The topic are smart homes. Regarding 1.) It sounds wrong for me, but in my opinion grammatically correct. Regarding 2.) It sound right, but ...