16

This year there were:

  • many more people
  • much more people

Alternatively:

  • many fewer people
  • much fewer people

Which is considered better English?

6
  • 1
    possible duplicate of Many vs Much - Which one should be used? Nov 10 '11 at 14:11
  • 6
    I wouldn't normally use either word with fewer. Like most people, I'd say far fewer. Nov 10 '11 at 14:26
  • This is not a duplicate: many people is not the same as many more people. In the former, many modifies people; in the latter, it modifies more. Nov 10 '11 at 14:29
  • 1
    @Cerberus: The questions both need to know when to use many, or when to use more. The answer is the same in both cases. Nov 10 '11 at 14:33
  • @Cerberus: Okay, a fair follow-up question. But as others note, the relevant fact is whether the noun refers to something that is countable or not. The presence of additional adjectives doesn't change this. Maybe you could come up with an example where an adjective changes something from countable to not or vice versa? Oh, sure, like "many more bananas" versus "much more pureed bananas". (That works with people too but is unlikely to occur outside of a horror movie.)
    – Jay
    Nov 10 '11 at 17:43
20

Both much and many can be used, but which is appropriate depends on whether the noun they're referring to is countable or not.

With countable nouns, use many more or many fewer:

I had many more bananas than Tom. I had many fewer nickels than Alice.

With uncountable nouns, use much more or much less

How much more fiber does a banana have than an apple? How much less water does this process use?

2
  • 1
    "Much fewer" also exists: while it is uncommon nowadays, it actually used to be more common than "many fewer". See this question: Much/Many Fewer?
    – herisson
    Feb 3 '17 at 3:06
  • 4
    I've never heard many fewer to be a honest. I hear a lot fewer, or far fewer
    – Daniel
    Oct 27 '18 at 19:03
0

According to Google Books Ngram Viewer, COCA, Ludwig and storywrangler, "many more people" is much more frequently used than "much more people". A search on the NOW corpus shows that "many more" modifies countable nouns while "much more" is followed by uncountable nouns in most cases. Grammatical rules do not work here. In "many more people", "many" pretends to function as an adverb, but in fact it is still an adjective. Keep in mind that language is not science. If many people use "many more people ", it will be grammatically correct eventually. enter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description here

1
  • Hello, Anshan. The question shouldn't be on ELU really; it lacks basic research, and is arguably far too basic for ELU. That said, you've put some work into this answer. I'd just point out (a) false positives like 'there is much more people could do' (but not 'there is many more people could do') probably skew results, (b) the table doesn't show results for say 'many more confidence', (c) 'In "many more people", "many" pretends to function as an adverb, but in fact it is still an adjective' is highly contestable, (d) so is 'grammatical rules do not work here', and (e) line 6: 'much more p'? Dec 15 '20 at 12:04

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