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Which of these clauses are correct?

"People of different kind"

or

"People of different kinds"

A sample sentence: This brings up the issue of how well our sample represents people of different kind[s].

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    As a native English speaker, I'd say "different kinds of people." Apr 23, 2016 at 15:50

5 Answers 5

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As kind is a countable noun (used in this sense), it must have an article when singular.

So it is either people of different kinds, or people of a different kind.

However whilst the former is used to refer to two or more kinds of people e.g. The anti-EU voters comprise peoples of many different kinds, the latter is used to apply to a single kind of people, who are different to some reference group, or groups e.g. UKIP voters are people of an entirely different kind to all others.

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    I am amazed that nobody has brought up the fact that people of different kinds and people of a different kind mean two different things. Am I the only one who thinks this? Apr 23, 2016 at 14:30
  • @PeterShor No I quite agree with you. And with due respect to you for noticing it, I will edit my answer to include the fact.
    – WS2
    Apr 24, 2016 at 7:41
  • @WS2, where did you find your quote? It sounds unusual to me.
    – zzxjoanw
    May 13, 2016 at 10:36
  • @zzxjoanw It is not a quote. It is simply an example I am giving of how to use the terms.
    – WS2
    May 14, 2016 at 6:47
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It should be people of different kinds.

Both people of different kinds, and people of a different kind are grammatical, but they mean two different things. It depends on whether you are talking about several kinds of people, or one kind of people.

For your sample sentence, it should be

This brings up the issue of how well our sample represents people of different kinds.

For the other phrase, a sample sentence is

The very rich are people of a different kind. One can't treat them the same way one treats you and me.

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People of a different kind. (Because 'kind' is a singular count noun and needs an article - in this case an indefinite article.) or People of different kinds. (Without articles)

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Yes grammatically it is either, People of different kinds, or people of a different kind.

But as the meaning is different , the suitalbe one of the sample sentence is : "people of different kinds"

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It should be written as 'different kinds of people'.

People of different kinds sounds off because the head of the phrase has to come after the of. Since you want to talk about people, that would be the head.

From the wikipedia article on head (linguistics):

[I]n the compound noun birdsong, the stem song is the head, since it determines the basic meaning of the compound. The stem bird modifies this meaning and is therefore dependent on song.

Also, take a look at the examples in definition 4 here.

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