Questions tagged [disjunction]

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9
votes
4answers
25k views

“My brother or one of my sisters” — singular or plural?

Should I use 'was' or 'were' in this example? I was always delighted when my brother or one of my sisters was/were asked to do them.
34
votes
5answers
68k views

“Neither Michael nor Albert is correct” or “Neither Michael nor Albert are correct”?

What is the correct sentence? Neither Michael nor Albert is correct. Neither Michael nor Albert are correct.
13
votes
2answers
61k views

Controversy over verb choice in “neither you nor I {is/am/are} in control”

I was watching the film A Game of Shadows starring Robert Downey Junior and Jude Law when this line came up, "...neither you nor I is in control..." (I can’t remember the exact words that ended the ...
7
votes
3answers
17k views

Singular or plural verb after a series connected by “or”

The following sentence refers to an apocalyptic story where money no longer has any value: A can of sardines, radio batteries, or a bicycle is/are more precious than money. Should I use is or are ...
44
votes
7answers
258k views

What is the correct way to use “neither” and “nor” in a sentence together?

Given these facts: The tool cannot be found in the kitchen. The tool cannot be found in the bathroom. Which is the correct sentence to represent the situation above? I can find the tool ...
30
votes
3answers
136k views

Using “nor” in a list without “neither”

This is the classic usage of neither/nor: I would neither hide nor run away. But is the following construction grammatical? (More than two choices, no neither) I wasn't going to play dead. I ...
9
votes
1answer
14k views

When should we use proximity rule in “either/or”, and “neither/nor”?

According to this link, if at least one of the nouns involved is plural then it should take the plural form of the verb. Otherwise, it should take the singular form of the verb. But in the last part ...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

Correct use of is/are in a list of pronouns [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Using “are/is” after a list with “and/or” My company's website recently received an E-mail stating there was a grammatical error in our greeting message. The sentence in ...
1
vote
1answer
75k views

Using “are/is” after a list with “and/or” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Singular or plural following a list James and Mark are going to help you. Here, I use 'are' because the subject is plural. James or Mark are going to help you. ...
7
votes
2answers
230 views

What form of the verb is used with compound subjects containing “or”?

We always get work done, regardless of what mood Bill or I is/am/are in. Which form of 'be' would be used here?
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Use “or” or “nor”? [duplicate]

I've always wondered this but never asked. Given this statement: Energy can be neither created nor destroyed. Should it be or or nor? This is on Wikipedia so they are probably correct in saying ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Which of several or’d-together subjects should the verb agree with? [duplicate]

There are instances when I have difficulties with the agreement between the subject and the predicate. Which of these should I say: Neither you nor I am to blame Neither you nor I are to blame.
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Can “nor” be used without “neither”?

I came across this sentence: Cummings Motors, Smith Electric nor our subcontractors can be held liable. Is this a proper use of the word nor? I can understand Neither Cummings Motors nor Smith ...
-1
votes
1answer
533 views

Is it right to use a singular form of the verb in this sentence?

I wanted to know if it is grammatically correct to say: Either the teacher or the students WAS enjoying the picnic. I'm talking about a grammatical principle and not a proximity or attraction one. ...
7
votes
6answers
4k views

Is it “John or Mary's house” or “John's or Mary's house”?

I understand that if John and Mary own a house together, it is John and Mary's house. If they jointly owned multiple houses, they would be John and Mary's houses. I also understand that if John and ...
1
vote
1answer
133 views

What is the rule that describes the usage of “or” between multiple adjectives describing the same noun? [closed]

What is the rule that describes the use of "or" in these sentences? "Do you want strawberry or grape jelly?" "Can I drive the red, blue, or green car?"
6
votes
2answers
28k views

Usage of “neither . . . nor” versus “not . . . or”

First, this is not a dupe of: "Not bad either" versus "not bad neither" nor a dupe of: "Neither Michael nor Albert is correct" or "Neither Michael nor Albert are ...
5
votes
5answers
18k views

“Either A, or B, or both”

I want to say that it's possible that at least one of {A,B} is true, and possibly both of them are true. Is it correct to phrase it as "either A, or B, or both are true".
2
votes
1answer
625 views

When a sentence contains both “not” and “or”, which one has priority?

I am changing a piece of text which current reads: Payment not deducted to also include the situation where payments are withheld. The suggested revision of text given to me is Payment not ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it “set A or B” or “sets A or B”?

Here is my sentence: The report further identifies two partial sets, which are not in themselves default sets but which one can—wholly or partly—combine with default sets A or B, or ...