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

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3
votes
1answer
65 views

“depending on something” … singular or plural

I'm writing a paper in which the experimental results with two different antibodies are compared across different brain regions. I want to write something like: We used antibodies A and B for ...
3
votes
2answers
407 views

What is the plural of status quo?

A quick search suggests that status quos is most common pluralization of status quo. This form, however, is deeply unsatisfying. Clearly, status is the noun in this phrase, while quo is some sort of ...
3
votes
1answer
71 views

How to Pluralize a Proper Noun That Already Has a “'s” In It

How does one pluralize a proper noun that already has an apostrophe in its singular form? for example, McDonalds'... How would I say there are three McDondald's in California? Please note: I am ...
3
votes
2answers
136 views

Why is “I believe in woman” ok? Or isn't it? (from Slade's “My Oh My”)

This first line of the song is I believe in woman, my oh my. I'm not a native speaker, but that sounds odd to me. I'd either expect women (I believe in women [in general]) or some kind of determiner ...
3
votes
1answer
84 views

“The damage to the heart and liver are permanent”: why plural?

In episode 11 of season 5 on House M.D. Dr. Cuddy says to the patient: The damage to the heart and liver are permanent. Is it correct? Shouldn't it be is permanent since it refers to the word ...
3
votes
1answer
136 views

You'll see them in future “as it is” OR “as they are”?

Let all the boxes be "as they are" OR "as it is"? Thanks for reading..
3
votes
2answers
4k views

Singular or plural verb after ‘no’? [duplicate]

Which one of the following sentences is correct? No errors or exceptions is found in the logs. No errors or exceptions are found in the logs.
3
votes
1answer
95 views

Can more options use “is”

So I've been learning German on Duolingo (great app by the way if you want to learn a language). I know you guys don't want translations here, but this is more about the English. Of course, not all ...
3
votes
2answers
225 views

Which person do I have to use when I use parenthesis

You (or someone else responsible) have/has to be there tomorrow. Which person should I use? 2nd or 3rd? My opinion is that both should be correct, but I'd like this to be clarified. How about ...
3
votes
3answers
703 views

Why can't we use the plural in “Mt. Fuji is higher than any other mountains in Japan”? [closed]

These are two sentences that I have a question about. Mt. Fuji is higher than any other mountains in Japan. Mt. Fuji is higher than any other mountain in Japan. I know the second ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

Is it “the xᵢ’s” or “the xᵢ”?

Let x1, . . . , xn be a collection of mathematical objects. When I refer to them, do I have to say the xi’s or just the xi? Edit: In this article (written by an American mathematician), one can ...
3
votes
2answers
269 views

Is what you “transcend” singular or plural?

I'm working on making changes to some text for a project that I'm on. One of the proposed changes is to the following: [He] has fostered creative environments that attract diverse talent who ...
3
votes
1answer
11k views

“has” vs “have” usage after enumerating two subjects, the first one in plural [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Singular or plural following a list I'm inclined towards the 2nd sentence, because 1) the first subject is plural and 2) there are two subjects. Sub-question: but what ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Are both “foodstuff” and “foodstuffs” valid?

I suppose that I could probably summarize that to "Is foodstuff a mass or count noun?" but I wasn't entirely certain if that would get me the wrong answer. I've always used "foodstuffs" when referring ...
3
votes
1answer
892 views

“Compound nouns list” or “compound noun list”?

I couldn't help but wonder every time I saw such a noun phrase. I've seen both forms used equally often, so I guess both of them can be used interchangeably. But do I guess right? Some examples: ...
3
votes
1answer
856 views

Quantity for abbreviations of plural terms

I have two questions which I think are so closely related that they should be grouped together. Quantity for an abbreviation that stands for a plural Context: The author is trying to explain what ...
3
votes
3answers
684 views

Irregular plurals. Leathermans or Leathermen?

Which plural do you use for a word that should have a regular plural but ends with a word that has its own irregular one? The example that made me ask was "leatherman" (the multitool) but there are ...
3
votes
2answers
40 views

the likes of which has/have

1)The corporeal, spiritual, emotional, and intellectual sides of human life have all been stirred by the hurricane the likes of which has never been seen in the history of the Earth. From The ...
3
votes
1answer
40 views

What is the plural of the abbreviation of “multiplicity automaton”, “MA” or “MAs”?

The "multiplicity automaton (MA)" is a model in compute science and its plural is "multiplicity automata". Should the plural of the abbreviation be MA or MAs? What is the correct way to pluralize ...
3
votes
3answers
48 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
3answers
107 views

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

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 ...
3
votes
1answer
203 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
380 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
158 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
176 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
261 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
3k 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
105 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
716 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
80 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
559 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
971 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
1answer
209 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
735 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
247 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
292 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
2k 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
0answers
34 views

Historical frequency of parenthetical plural(s)

Seems to me that parenthetical plurals have been increasing in recent years. Is there any way to accurately measure this? Google Ngram Viewer seems like a method, but the use of parentheses, first ...
3
votes
1answer
95 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
232 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
1k 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
4answers
517 views

Which form should be used for “student union”: 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
1answer
108 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
965 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
84 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
179 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
295 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 ...