Questions about uncountable (non-count, mass) nouns

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1answer
57 views

Using “some” to describe units of time

"some minutes, some years, some seconds" are grammatically incorrect. But "a few minutes, a few years, a few seconds" works. I'm trying to teach a non-native speaker this nuance but "it just sounds ...
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1answer
33 views

Suspension or suspensions

What is the difference between suspension and suspensions? I know suspensions is the plural form for dispersion but in what circumstances the word "suspensions" can be used in a sentence. ...
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3answers
90 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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3answers
2k views

“The” and superlative of uncountable noun — “the clearest water”?

Uncountable nouns are usually used without an article. Superlatives require definite article. What comes out of these 2 rules when superlative meets uncountable article? We need an example, I hope it ...
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1answer
40 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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1answer
88 views

When can uncountable nouns be countable?

I have a question about uncountable nouns that are used as countable in certain situations. When it comes to some uncountable nouns such as fruit, cake, coffee etc., I have found out that they can ...
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1answer
119 views

Why are some nouns countable and others uncountable? [duplicate]

I'm having trouble articulating what it is I'm looking for, so I'll start with an example. Candy is delicious. Candies are delicious. Vegetables are delicious. Fruit is delicious. ...
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6answers
18k views

“Baggage” versus “luggage”

I have the feeling that luggage is more closely associated with vacation travel, whereas baggage is for general transportation. Or... are they just exact synonyms?
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6answers
179 views

Why is “collect a coin” ungrammatical?

I'm on the topic of countability and an example in my book says that "collect a coin" is ungrammatical, and that you say "collect coins" instead. But why? Is it because "collecting" is not appropriate ...
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1answer
73 views

much natural or more natural?

so I've heard the expression "it sounds more natural" in many English podcasts but as everyone knows "natural" is an uncountable adjective, therefore "much" should be preceded before the adjective. I ...
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2answers
47 views

“Frequent absence” versus “frequent absences”

One of my English tests required me to complete the gaps with words formed from the words in capital letters. It is a love story about a man with a disorder that causes him to time travel ...
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1answer
45 views

Density or Densities [duplicate]

I have some problems in using the plural form of a uncountable noun. For instance: "The density of all the solutions is measured." or "The densities of all the solutions are measured." Is there ...
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6answers
14k 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
63 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 ...
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3answers
615 views

Should I say “study materials” or “education materials” or “teaching material?”

I am building a web application where people can upload their study materials about robotics and programming and manage them and share etc. I want to name it well, so at the moment I have: ...
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6answers
29k views

“Advice” vs. “an advice”

I have often heard that advice is uncountable and shouldn't be prefixed with an article. So I often force myself to say "a piece of advice". But I've seen it used with an article on a number of ...
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0answers
49 views

Are data structures countable or uncountable nouns?

For example what would be the correct answers to this article quiz? Why is nil/a/the priority queue implemented with nil/a/the heap ordered binary tree faster than nil/a/the sorted array ...
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1answer
30 views

electronic music-incountable nouns vs uncountable nouns with adjectives [closed]

I know that "music" is an uncountable noun, but can I write: My favourite music is an electronic music. Can I pyt "an" before music in this sentence and why?
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1answer
234 views

Abstract nouns: countable and uncountable

What is the element that causes many abstract nouns to be both countable and uncountable (not with different meanings)? To illustrate the point, a word like taste as a noun when it means "the ...
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2answers
80 views

Is 'storage' countable or uncountable if it means warehouse or repository?

I need to write an article and I have to use this word in the context. I cannot replace the word with a different word (warehouse, repository, etc.). I checked this word via ...
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1answer
179 views

Is it correct to use infrastructure as a countable noun in this context?

My understanding of the word "infrastructure" is that it is uncountable. However, upon looking it up in Oxford Learner's Dictionary, I found that it is classified as "countable, uncountable." ...
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1answer
45 views

Should “repetition” be singular or plural?

We all know what repetition is. I'm trying to construct the following sentence: He called out her name in an earnest, helpless repetition. or should it be He called out her name in earnest, ...
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2answers
229 views

What word means 'discrete piece of knowledge'?

In my understanding 'knowledge' is one of a group of nouns in English that is characterized as uncountable (meaning 'knowledge' should never be made plural). If that is the case, is there a word in ...
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1answer
67 views
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2answers
103 views

Possible “rule” for uncountable nouns

In looking at many of the answers to ESL learner's questions about countable and uncountable nouns it seems that answers usually take the form "Uncountables can be become countables. There's no rule ...
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4answers
4k views

The article “a/an” with uncountable nouns

Sometimes I read in books sentences where uncountable nouns are used with the article "a/an". For example She fades like a dew before the sun. Is it out of the common rules? Sorry if this ...
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3answers
111 views

Polish (the substance, not the language)

I'm talking about the stuff you use when you're polishing. According to etymonline.com, this usage has been around for less than 200 years: polish (n.) 1590s, "absence of coarseness," from ...
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6answers
8k views

Is “Just a friendly advice” grammatical?

I know that "advice" is uncountable and thus is incompatible with the article "a". However, the phrase "Just a friendly advice" seems to be rather widespread. Is it idiomatic, or incorrect? What is ...
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4answers
4k views

So, “Some advice” or “some advices”? Which is correct?

"Some advice" or "some advices" as in "I got some advice / advices for you"? So, Which is correct? In Oxford Learner's Dictionaries, "advice" is uncountable noun, so "Some advice" is the correct ...
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2answers
106 views

Discrete units of continuous quantity

Is it proper to speak of units of a continuous quantity as if they are discrete or continuous? For example, I never know whether I should say that some food has "less calories" than another food ...
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1answer
142 views

Indefinite article after as?

I read that when you classify or define people and things you use a/an: Don't use your plate as an ashtray. But then I found a news article which included the following sentence: Indian ...
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2answers
790 views

When does an uncountable noun become countable?

I wonder why "fat" "carbohydrate" and "protein" can have the plural form as in the following quotes. Aren't those nouns uncountable? The Russian consumer protection agency said Friday it is taking ...
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3answers
121 views

“Three pieces of email” alternately to “three emails” in AE?

Does American English allow the use of "email" as a mass noun, in such a way that it is not uncommon to hear any such of the following phrases from native speakers? I've still got a huge backload of ...
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1answer
96 views

Are All Compound Nouns Countable

Are all Compound Nouns Countable? for example traffic is an uncountable noun but traffic jam is countable. sorry for my mundane question
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1answer
56 views

“a bewildering amount of choice” or “a bewildering amount of choices”?

"a bewildering amount of choice" is a sentence from a dictionary. I think it should be ""a bewildering amount of choices" and I found both of them can be found from the Internet. Anyone can help to ...
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1answer
107 views

Use of “age” as an uncountable & countable noun

Why is it that the "age" is used as an uncountable noun in some cases and as a countable noun in other circumstances? Examples: Now the market is not booming, and the employers are switching ...
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4answers
121 views

Is “reign” a countable or uncountable noun?

I'm editing an advanced grammar text book and the author and I cannot decide on whether "reign" is an uncountable noun or not. The sentence is: With Mr Smith gone, her reign could begin. ...
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2answers
94 views

Would “mould” and “mud” be considered substances made up of parts?

Ignoring the difference in spelling between "mould" and "mold" for the moment, I need to categorise the following terms into "masses of substances" or "masses of substances made up of parts too ...
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1answer
66 views

Articles with abstract nouns

Given: In the world of a flourishing globalization Which sort of article should be used before flourishing — zero, definite, or indefinite?
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613 views

'pizza' and 'cake': uncountable? [closed]

Countable noun and Uncountable noun are really hard to understand. I read "'a cake' is correct, but 'a pizza' isn't correct." Why is 'pizza' uncountable?
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4answers
1k views

Why is liquid a countable noun?

I read this sentence in a description to a podcast from https://www.eslpod.com/website/index_new.html Batter, “batter,” when we talk about cooking is a liquid, made usually with eggs, and ...
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3answers
305 views

Point[s] of datum vs. point[s] of data

I know that there's no any shortage of controversy about "data" and "datum", but I've recently questioned the validity in the specific case of "I am but a point of data". Is this, under the strict ...
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2answers
210 views

“an alarm” vs “the alarm” [closed]

Which ones correct ? All the guests on the boat got frightened when they heard an alarm. (or) All the guests on the boat got frightened when they heard the alarm. I expect the second sentence to ...
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9answers
3k views

Use of the word “beeves”

In what sentence would you need to use the plural of beef? The plural is beeves. Plural form of beef (sense 1 of the noun). [OD] I have tried every sentence that it could be necessary but I ...
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2answers
61 views

Contrasting emphasis of an uncountable noun

In this translated sentence, water is supposed to be emphasized in contradistinction to the sand in an hourglass/sand clock: Like an hourglass, the device is made of glass and metal, except that ...
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3answers
1k views

coffee vs. some coffee

I want coffee. vs. I want some coffee. Does these two sentences completely identical? In general, is it possible to delete the word "some" from every instance of "some coffee", and to keep ...
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2answers
4k views

when does the noun “time” become a countable noun?

I am writing an email to my friend and want to use this sentence: "I am having a great time." I would like to know whether the above sentence is correct. Also, I know that time can be an ...
3
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1answer
209 views

Can 'surgery' be a count noun in the sense of 'medical procedure'?

This is something that has bothered me for a long time. Several years ago a remember noticing in the media a shift from using "An operation" to "A surgery" when talking about someone who was ...
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5answers
790 views

Is “education” a count noun?

I'm getting confused about these two sentences: The government should provide education to its citizens. She has received a great education since high school. I think education is an ...
0
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1answer
93 views

Are “caw” or “squawk” countable nouns?

So both "caw" and "squawk" are "a harsh noise made by a bird". Are these two words countable or uncountable? For example, which of the following two is more correct? All night I heard the caw of ...