I recently came across this sentence :

A lot of resources is available:

quoted from the webpage http://cheat.errtheblog.com/s/rvm. Since this is a very reputed website, I don't think that can be a wrong grammar.

From my understanding of grammar. I think that the sentence should be

A lot of resources are available:

Please guide me.


Actually, on the page you listed, a lot of resources is available is incorrect (though it might be correct in some other cases).

According to Swan,

"When a lot is used with a plural word, the verb is plural; when lots is used with a singular word, the verb is singular."

The correct form here would be "[A lot of / Many] resources are available."

|improve this answer|||||
  • This is perhaps not as naive a question as it might appear. In a not too distant neck of the woods we have 'His means are more than adequate' (financial resources) but 'The best means of securing the cooperation of the builders is to appeal to their self-interest.' (strategy / method / agency). AHDEL; usage note. So 'means' is [treated as being] both singular and plural. – Edwin Ashworth Apr 1 '14 at 9:00
  • And in fact 'resources' is also massified: Human resources is the set of individuals who make up the workforce of an organization, business sector, or economy. Wikipedia subjects Towson has: 8. Plural form subjects – Plural form subjects with a singular meaning take a singular verb. (e.g. news, measles, mumps, physics ... [means, politics, resources ... in some of their senses] – Edwin Ashworth Apr 1 '14 at 9:32
  • 1
    An auction catalogue could offer "a lot of Dresden dinner-plates is available as lot 756," just to throw a spanner in (not into the china, obviously). – Andrew Leach Apr 1 '14 at 9:38
  • @AndrewLeach Surely the first 'lot' there is used as a noun though, somewhat a synonym to 'set'? – Alicja Z Apr 1 '14 at 9:39
  • Yes, but it could easily be "A lot of resources is available as lot 756". Just saying that "a lot of [plural noun] is" is not necessarily wrong. – Andrew Leach Apr 1 '14 at 9:40

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.