Please help me understand when should the plural forms be used... Ex. What does this mean or what does this means .. He rides well or he ride well etc

closed as off-topic by sumelic, Centaurus, NVZ, user140086, Colin Fine Apr 20 '16 at 10:48

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"What does this mean?", "This means something."

"Mean(s)", as in attempting to convey meaning, is "Mean" where referring to yourself ("I mean"), referring to a group of people including or not including yourself ("We mean", "They mean"), or referring to someone else in the gender-neutral. ("They mean")

For all other purposes, "means" would be applicable: referring to someone else in the singular gender-specific form ("He means" or "She means"), referring to an object ("It means"), referring to something in or out of posession("This means" or "That means"), and so on.

This is generally the case with English verbs. I wouldn't call this singular/plural forms.

  • So the correct usage would be ..what does this means? Right – user3608985 Apr 20 '16 at 0:18
  • No, "mean" would be used following "this" - "What does this mean?" – Hanii Puppy Apr 20 '16 at 0:21

This is basic English. "What does this means" is wrong. The verb "mean" should remain in the infinitive because the auxiliary verb "do" is already conjugated. That happens with all verbs that are used together with an auxiliary verb in questions and in the negative in simple present and simple past tenses. In those cases, only the auxiliary is conjugated and the main verb remains in the infinitive.

  • 2
    That was too heavy what you just said – user3608985 Apr 20 '16 at 12:19
  • It's the most basic grammar. I'm not an anglophone and I know that. – Tércio Aleixo Apr 20 '16 at 12:47
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    Oh sorry...you took me in the wrong sense...i am not a native speaker either...just saw some people wrting it that way so was confused – user3608985 Apr 20 '16 at 13:26

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