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In the following sentence, is it correct the use of the verb was?

As both Engines of Privilege and another new book on the top tier of private schools, Gilded Youth by James Brooke-Smith, explain, the origins of England’s famous boys’ “public schools” was as charitable foundations set up to educate the poor of their locality.

If so, why?

The sentence appears in the article 'What to do about Britain’s private school problem?' in the Financial Times.

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    Please edit your question to include what research you have already done before asking here; more specifically, why do you think it is or may be correct, and why do you think it is not or may not be correct (and what, in that case, is the alternative you would expect to see in its stead)? Please provide your reasoning so that we know what, if any, misunderstanding underlies the question. That way, we can give you a better answer. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Feb 16 at 16:23
  • I can't check the FT article to see whether it says 'origins' or 'origin' without paying for it, but I suspect a misprint. – Kate Bunting Feb 16 at 16:50
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No, "the origins of {X} were..."

Both "origins" and "foundations" are plural, so the verb should also be plural.

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