0

I have seen many uses, even in books, of the three words "does there exist" and of the three words "does there exists". Examples:

  • Does there exist a political business cycle? [1]
  • Does there exists a general procedure for justifying ... [2]

And even in the same paragraph in another book:

Does there exists a uniform way of specifying languages ...? That is, does there exist a uniform construction such that ...? [3]

I would guess that the form does there exist is the right one, but a confirmation would be nice, or even better -- an explanation/reference.

3
  • 2
    The presence of the dummy auxiliary verb "do" means that the main verb must be in the plain (infinitival) form, i.e. "exist". – BillJ Apr 30 '16 at 15:24
  • 2
    Except for a handful of books by non-native English speakers, this mistake seems to have come into existence only after the invention of word-processing software. See Ngram. – Peter Shor Apr 30 '16 at 16:06
  • I think that Ronald V. Book is a native English speaker... but thanks for the Ngram! – Bach Apr 30 '16 at 18:59
4

You can have singular and plural, but like this:

Does there exist a polical business cycle?
Do there exist political business cycles?

But (as BillJ said) both keep the infinitive form "exist".

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