hundreds of persons
Could you please learn me what is the difference between the two?
Thanks in advance
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If you use hundreds then it is followed by of. "hundreds persons/people" is wrong. Structures of the type "how much/ how many of what" use "of" in English with few exceptions and fall under the heading partitive or partitive genitive.
Why do we say "hundreds of demonstrators but a hundred/one hundred demonstrators (without of)?
Answer:You say fifty persons because it is a numeral. Though a hundred/one hundred still has some features of a noun it is regarded as a numeral, whereas hundreds is regarded as a noun describing a quantity just as a lot of/ a quantity of etc.
Did you happen to be reading from the Cambridge Learner's Dictionary? It says:
of preposition (AMOUNT)
used after words or phrases expressing amount, number, or a particular unit:
- a kilo of apples
loads of food
hundreds of people
most of them
both of us
a third of all people
a speck of dust
a drop of rain
In any case, the word of cannot be removed from any of those phrases; the resulting phrase would sound unidiomatic and ungrammatical.
I'm inclined to believe that the first one is true. We have the structure: amount + of + N. Any other statemtent with no "of" is wrong. I also found a passage which contains an equivalent example to the usage of the phrase "hundreds of persons" http://dethi.violet.vn/present/show/entry_id/239291