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  1. A large number of rare paintings were sold last year.
  2. A large number of rare paintings was sold last year.

Which one of the sentences above is the correct one? If I consider that the verb to sell refers to 'a large number', then the use of 'was' is correct. However, considering that it refers to 'rare paintings' then I should use 'were', right?

How should I proceed on my reasoning?

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We are Mr. White's other 10th grade English class. Our answer is: a number vs. the number

The number of people we need to hire is thirteen.

A number of people have written in about this subject.

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We are Mr. White's 10th grade English class. We feel that if the subject were rare paintings,then it would be plural. However there is a faction among us that believes that the subject ia a large number. Our split: 14=Rare paintings 3 = a large number 11 are too scared to answer

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