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My confused rule is : The verb in an or, either/or, or neither/nor sentence agrees with the noun or pronoun closest to it.

How it is possible that this sentence is correct !

She, my friends, and I are not going to the festival.

Reference : Rule 3

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  • Conjoined subjects are plural.
    – user178049
    Aug 23 '17 at 8:24
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This is tricky. The common rule is - unless "and" makes multiple subjects a single entity you should use the plural form:

  • A pen and a book are on the table. (Two subject "a pen" and "a book" don't make a single entity so the plural verb is used.)
  • Bread and butter is good for breakfast. (Two subject "bread" and "butter" make a single entity so the singular verb is used.)

  • She, my friends, and I are not going to the festival. (Multiple subjects that don't make a single entity so the plural verb is used.)

Rule #3 in your reference doesn't apply to "and"; it only applies to "or/either-or/neither-nor".

The verb in an or, either/or, or neither/nor sentence agrees with the noun or pronoun closest to it.

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It's simple enumeration. Enumeration is mentioning (a number of things) one by one. It's collective, thus plural.

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