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  1. This one, and the related questions linked from there, addresses the choice between ...

  2. This one, and the related questions linked from there, address the choice between ...

Which one is correct, (1) or (2)?

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1 Answer 1

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With and you should use the plural address, because and is a conjunction—it joins the two entities into a plural subject.

If you instead used with or as well as, however, you would use the singular addresses, because these prepositional phrases are not integral parts of the sentence (constituents) but supplemental modifiers (adjuncts).

Note that you can move the prepositional phrases to other positions, but not the conjunctive phrase.

   This one, with the related questions, addresses the choice ...
   With the related questions, this one addresses the choice ...
   This one addresses, with the related questions, the choice ...

   This one, as well as the related questions, addresses the choice ...
   As well as the related questions, this one addresses the choice ...
? This one addresses, as well as the related questions, the choice ... grammatical, but ambiguous.

   This one, and the related questions, address the choice ...
And the related questions, this one addresses the choice ...
This one addresses, and the related questions, the choice ...

That said, you very often find people using as well as and with as conjuncts rather adjuncts; and you occasionally find even quite highly educated people employing and clauses like yours as adjuncts rather than conjuncts, setting them off (as you have) with commas in writing or ‘comma intonation’.

As a professional, I find these uses regrettable: they dull the edges of the tools in my kit, without bringing any new expressivity to the language. But I’m in a rapidly dwindling minority. I can keep these vermin off of my own lawn, but they seem destined to infest those of my neighbors.

In short, you can in almost all circumstances get away with either the singular or the plural here. A handful of people will wince at the singular, but they will not reproach you.


? marks an utterance as only marginally acceptable
marks a sentence as unacceptable

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  • My feeling is that people obey their ears, and their ears don't always agree with what should be the right answer, at least traditionally speaking. That's fine with me, but using an and-marked NP as an adjunct rather than a conjunct definitely doesn't please my ear.
    – user230
    Dec 6, 2013 at 0:49

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