I wrote a blog post, which has the below sentence.

I owned a few paperback books, but most of the reading was done on my 15.6-inch laptop screen.

Grammarly extension pointed out an error with this statement.

It told me to replace was with were. It gave me the following explanation.

The singular verb was does not appear to agree with the plural subject most. Consider changing the verb form for subject-verb agreement.

I somehow feel was is the right word here, but don't know why.

I need your help folks. Can you please tell me which is right and why?


  • 1
    What makes you think what grammarly extension says is correct? You should never trust any on-line spell and grammar checker. They can't tell the difference between countable nouns and non-countable nouns or between singular nouns and plural nouns. Related question, “Most of what” and “is” or “are”
    – user140086
    Mar 3, 2016 at 7:09

1 Answer 1


Most of something noncountable or continuous is singular: most of the house is carpeted; most of the summer is hot; most of the milk is bad; most of the public is undecided (US English).

But most of the items that are countable are plural: most of the rooms in the house are carpeted; most summer days are hot; most of the cartons have spoiled; most of the public are undecided (UK English).

  • Thanks for the answer @Will Briggs. So, what's the answer in this case? I think that since reading isn't countable, I should use 'was'. What do you think?
    – nikhil
    Mar 6, 2016 at 7:36
  • 1
    Yes: "Most of the reading was done."
    – Maverick
    Mar 10, 2016 at 16:42

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