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

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3
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3answers
45 views

Can I use “any” with an object expressed in plural?

Which one is correct? "Any letter" "Any letters" Let me provide the context: "Are there any letters in the post box?"
3
votes
1answer
85 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)" ?
3
votes
1answer
303 views

Equivalent of using (s) to indicate possible plural for words using “ies” for plural? [duplicate]

If I want to write how many of something I have that uses "s" to indicate plural, I can use (s), as in "Joe had X apple(s)". But say I want to write something like "The report contains 2 entries" or ...
3
votes
1answer
141 views

Singular possessive apostrophe for name ending in “s” [duplicate]

Creating some copy and want to make sure singular possessive name is correct... If I have a name of an animal, Jaws, would correct grammar be, Jaws' Laws?
3
votes
1answer
152 views

“Any question” versus “any questions” [duplicate]

What is the proper use of question versus questions. For example, "Please call me with any question (or questions) you may have." My boss and I are having an argument over this.
3
votes
2answers
229 views

“The best (and one of very few) website[s]”

Stack Exchange is the best (and one of very few useful) question-and-answer websites in the world. In this statement, should it be website (where "best" overrules "one of very few") or websites ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

“Set of techniques”; singular or plural? [duplicate]

I have an English course book that contains this question: Fill in the blank "The book is a set of techniques that systematically __ the learner for interaction with target language speakers". (A) ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Use of plural with “respectively” when referring to a property

If you are referring to one property but are giving the respective values for two different things do you use the singular or plural form? Can the property be treated as a mass noun so that it takes ...
3
votes
1answer
98 views

“Not only my husband but also my son is a doctor” [duplicate]

Starting to review grammar. It's a little confusing for me to identify which is the correct one. Not only my husband but also my son is a doctor. Someone said that it must be doctors because ...
3
votes
2answers
628 views

Are two singular nouns together singular or plural?

I'm writing a research paper with several classmates for school. However, there's a sentence that we, as well as others who have reviewed our paper, disagree with on how to write. Which sentence is ...
3
votes
1answer
34k views

Use “have” or “has” any/anyone/anything in the question?

Similar to this question, is it correct to use have or has with any* (any/anything/anyone/...) in a question? Examples: Have/Has any of my advices help you? Have/Has anyone of you seen it? Does ...
3
votes
1answer
77 views

Is it “the humanities” or just “humanities”?

I.e., would I use "I hate the humanities" or "I hate humanities"? On that note, would the complementary statement be "I love the sciences" or "I love science"? "I love sciences" just sounds wrong, ...
3
votes
2answers
307 views

“This date and time is” vs. “this date and time are”

The following sentence appears in a letter I am editing: If this date and time are not convenient please contact me at ... Structurally, this seems okay, but it feels very awkward. Shouldn't it ...
3
votes
2answers
886 views

Singular action for a plural subject

Consider the following: I pull my ear. He pulls his ear. She pulls her ear. What would be the correct form of "ear" for plural subjects? Is there a generalized rule that I can be pointed to? For ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Lots of questions for a lot of clauses!

I am confused over the use of lots of vs lot of. I am phrasing a sentence having the following clause : [Article] [lot-of/lots-of] [noun singular/plural] [verb] ... As an example : A lot of ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Is a range of dates singular or plural?

Given a sentence such as: May 17-19 (is/are) available for our meeting. is it best to treat the "May 17-19" as a singular range or a plural number of dates?
3
votes
1answer
201 views

What is the plural of tablix?

Don't know why the word table wasn't good enough for Microsoft, but SQL Server Reporting Services has a control called a tablix.... But how would I tell you that I have multiple tablix controls? (I ...
3
votes
1answer
639 views

Is “an archives” correct? If so, is it an exception or are there others like it?

A friend recently posted a photo he took of a sign at the LBJ presidential library that used the word "archives" as a singular noun. According to a Smithsonian Institution Archives blog post, this is ...
3
votes
1answer
223 views

“There lie targets” vs. “there lies targets”

I have a sentence: However, until then it is obvious that there lie intermediate “targets” — foo, bar and baz. Is the use of lie in this way correct? The targets still exist, so I don’t want ...
3
votes
1answer
287 views

Apostrophe and plurals of abbreviations [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is the correct way to pluralize an acronym? I was in Middlesbrough yesterday and spotted: CJ’s Cafe So far, so good, I thought. A selection of the delights within ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

“Change their positions” vs. “change their position” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Those who qualify will be awarded a certificate” or “those who qualify will be awarded certificates”? “On their back” or “on their ...
3
votes
2answers
7k views

Is “Cost savings” a singular term or plural terms?

Can I use Cost savings in the following sentence as a singular term? Cost savings is often seen with these program.
3
votes
1answer
82 views

Should acronyms that are actually hidden plurals be treated as plural?

The term Generally Accepted Accounting Principles is abbreviated as GAAP. (Actually, I don't know if it is an initialism and each letter is spoken, or whether it is pronounced as gap, sorry.) Now, I ...
3
votes
3answers
209 views

Plural of “coming out?”

As "coming out of the closet" has become ubiquitous in recent years, what would the plural be? Would it follow the rule of "goings-on" or be a hyphenated "coming-outs" or something else entirely?
3
votes
2answers
745 views

how do we pronounce the plural form of kg in a sentence?

Could you tell me whether we need to say " I want three kg of carrot " or " I want three kgs of carrot "? Is the former the correct way of writing it? Thank you
3
votes
1answer
102 views

“X in Japan is different from [that/those] in other countries”

I was wondering if the following sentence is clear: The book industry in Japan is very different from [that/those] in many other western countries. My questions are: Is it correct to use that ...
3
votes
5answers
790 views

“Your 1 hour 6 minutes are up” / “Your 1 hour 6 minutes is up”

I'm not sure which of these is more correct. Your 1 hour is up. This is easy. Singular. Your 5 minutes are up Again, simple enough. Plural. Your 1 hour and 6 minutes is up. Your 3 ...
3
votes
0answers
47 views

How to explain why do we use, e.g. “1” video but “0” videos? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Correct plural form of a zero quantified noun It's getting really complicated when you have to explicate to a student a bunch of habitual "Whys"! For example, how do I ...
3
votes
0answers
83 views

How to use “my” correctly in a plural possessive? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is “my wife and I's” correct, or should it be “my wife's and my”? Are the following sentences grammatically correct? If not, how should I ...
3
votes
0answers
177 views

Is it correct to say “lesson count” or “lessons count”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “user accounts” or “users account”? If I mean "number of lessons", which grammatical construction should I go for? I can imagine three of them: ...
3
votes
2answers
252 views

Is “a group” singular or plural?

I was wondering what number the verb 'to snowboard' should take in the following sentence: A group of men, led by Olympic athlete John Rider, snowboard(s) down the gently sloping hills. Because ...
3
votes
4answers
466 views

Which form should be used for an “adjective noun”: singular, plural, possessive?

When should a noun acting as an adjective be plural, and when should it be singular? And when should it be possessive, like baker's dozen and when should it be plural possessive, like farmers' market? ...
3
votes
4answers
183 views

Half doesn't or half don't? [duplicate]

What’s the right version of these two? Half of the students doesn’t bother to show up. Half of the students don’t bother to show up. Or are both right?
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Which of these is correct? [duplicate]

Which of these film introductions demonstrate the correct use of English Grammar? I have used example (1), but have been taken to task for so doing. Eagle Films present Eagle Films presents ...
3
votes
4answers
640 views

uncountable noun + and + uncountable noun [duplicate]

Which sounds better? There is water and butter in my fridge. There are water and butter in my fridge. I think it should be: is. But what if we said: How much flour and butter is needed to ...
3
votes
6answers
7k views

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

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 ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Plural form of the acronym LASER

I'm writing a technical report and must use the plural form of LASER. Seeing as it is an acronym, how does one add the 's'?
2
votes
5answers
1k views

“A classmate and I was” vs “A classmate and I were”

I'm writing a resume right now targeted towards a specific company. My girlfriend (a classmate) and I were (see, I don't know if that's the right word, hence this question!) the first from our school ...
2
votes
6answers
1k views

Is this sentence correct? If wrong what is the correct form?

I lie certain times(1) but not all the time(2). Should (1) be times or time? and Should (2) be time or times? What is the correct form of the sentence and why?
2
votes
5answers
347 views

Is it true that the plural of “chad” is “chadim”?

I was busy at filing tasks today, working the hole punch and manufacturing... er... more than one chad. I consulted the Computer Contradictionary by Stan Kelly-Bootle, which is normally a reliable ...
2
votes
3answers
30k views

What is the meaning of “personnel”? What is its plural form?

From Wordweb: Group of people willing to obey orders The department responsible for hiring and training and placing employees and for setting policies for personnel management The two are kind of ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

…but 20 dollars is 20 dollars [duplicate]

There is a well known phrase: "I'm not gay but 20 dollars is 20 dollars". Why do we say that '$20 is $20', and not '$20 are $20'?
2
votes
2answers
4k views

Why is it “choruses” and not “chori”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicates: Which style of Latin plurals should I use? Irregular plurality situations in English This is really weird IMO; the plural of cactus is cacti, so why is not the plural ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

“Do the media…” or “Does the media”?

I saw a headline: Do the media exploit personal tragedy? This sounds wrong to me, I would've have written "Does the media exploit personal tragedy?". Which is correct?
2
votes
8answers
19k views

Should I say “there is a handful of…” or “there are a handful of…”? [duplicate]

I want to write that I have handful of somethings. Which of these is the correct form? There is a handful of somethings. There are a handful of somethings. Are both correct?
2
votes
4answers
21k views

What is the correct plural of “stadium”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Which style of Latin plurals should I use? If my memory of Latin lessons serves me correctly, it should really be stadia However, I think most people would ...
2
votes
4answers
371 views

How do you understand “I have to change my file names”?

If I say: I have to change my file names. What does an English speaker understand? "I have to change names of a single file." "I have to change names of many files." What is the rule here?
2
votes
4answers
8k views

“Tip” or “tips” of your fingers?

Which of the following is correct and why? opportunity at the tips of her fingers opportunity at the tip of her fingers The former seems correct to me, but I don’t entirely understand why.
2
votes
3answers
12k views

“Do” vs. “does” with multiple singular subjects

How does serverfault, stackoverflow and other stackExchange sites connect together? Is that does or do? Because I'm talking about multiple items, it would be do. What is more correct?
2
votes
2answers
748 views

What's the plural of quantum?

As in a number of the smallest de facto units of anything you can have in the universe? Currently in the running in my mind: Quanta Quantums