I'm considering if I can say:

"He says the tickets are a present from him"

Because I want to emphasize these tickets are just a big present. Please help me! Thank you so much!

2 Answers 2


That is fine to say. Basically, the multiple tickets are all part of a single present. That's the function the verb "is" (here "are") provides here: it defines "tickets" as "a present" (saying tickets are a present).

The concept of subject/verb agreement gets complicated with sentences like this because neither the "tickets" nor the "present" is taking any action. Rather, the sentence is just communicating some state or quality of the first subject's existence. Because of that, you should use whichever form of verb matches the first apparent subject (which is actually the true subject of the sentence). For instance:

The tickets are a present from him.


This small marble is actually many tiny atoms!


You're perfectly fine using it in that way. 'A gift' signifies the freely-given status, so anything you give on a singular occasion can be referred to as a singular gift.

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