I was doing a listening exercise for an English Test, then i saw the written answer (which coincided with the audio) and it said this:

"Despite their differences, all forms of lives share the same characteristics"

As you can only listen once,i wrote "forms of life". Because for me "forms of lives" sounds weird..

So my question is a simple one, is "forms of lives" correct? i used a site called ludwig.guru which searches for specific phrases on the internet, and i didn't got a single exact match with that particular phrase.


  • 4
    I would read it as "forms of life", because they are lifeforms, not livesforms. I presume the context was various creatures, not such creatures day-to-day activities.
    – user3169
    May 17, 2018 at 5:24
  • 3
    To me, lives would only make sense if it was talking about the way in which we live. (However, even if that were the case, I would expect to read the forms of our lives.) But I've never heard such an expression. On the other hand, I've heard forms of life often—and it refers to life in general, an uncountable noun. May 17, 2018 at 5:39

1 Answer 1


It is highly likely the passage is referring to life in the general sense, and thus -- as Jason Bassford commented -- an uncountable noun. That's why we say both "forms of life" and "lifeforms" which correctly identifies the plural element as the forms that life may take; a point that user3169 also touched upon.

That being said, there may be a context in which "forms of lives" could possibly be correct, but I can't think of any at the moment.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .