Questions tagged [singular-vs-plural]

For questions about the difference between singular and plural forms of a word; when they should be used, or the difference between them.

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1answer
22 views

"stop pattern" vs "stops pattern"

I want to describe the progression of stops of a bus route. I'm wondering whether it's better to call it the "stop pattern" or the "stops pattern" (or similarly: "stop ...
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1answer
17 views

""a" and "b" depict the y-coordinate of each end point respectively of the curved line."

I am writing something about cubic interpolation. An end point is a 2d point with coordinates (x,y). A curved line only has two end points, the starting point and the ending point. Which of these ...
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1answer
21 views

Singular vs plural noun after the verb "to like"

I always thought that only a plural noun could follow the verb "to like" when talking about something in general, e.g. I like cars, until I came across the phrase "I like a mystery"...
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1answer
37 views

When to use plural and singular forms in the consequence of words

For example, I have figures. What's the right form to speak about their colors? Figures colors (I assume it means that I have multiple figures and each of them has a different color) Figure colors (I ...
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1answer
44 views

Do I use was or were?

I wanted to say "I think the primary use case for USB A were thumbdrives" but I am utterly unsure whether it's "was" because the primary use case or it's "were" because ...
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1answer
20 views

Should it be "In chapters 1 or 2" or "In chapter 1 or 2"?

Consider the following example: In chapters 1 and 2, the author discusses X In this example, chapter needs to be pluralized for the sentence to be grammatically correct, right? But what if and is ...
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1answer
29 views

When specifying mean and tolerance, is the use of plural counters determined by the mean or the tolerance?

An object is angled 6 degrees. No problem. An object is angled 1 degree. Again, no problem. Through a series of tests, an object was angled 6 ± 2 degrees. Still, no problem. What about: Through a ...
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1answer
17 views

Is it a game mechanics or game mechanics?

People tend to dislike a game mechanics that's complex. People tend to dislike game mechanics that are complex. I know some people use "a game" even though mechanics is always in plural, ...
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1answer
33 views

"it was every man and woman for themselves"

…it was every man and woman for themselves. Or should it be 'for himself and herself'? or maybe just 'himself' referring to both?
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3answers
56 views

*Neither of your responses (are, is) satisfactory.*

Neither of your responses (are, is) satisfactory. In my opinion, "are" should be used because "responses" is in plural form but as per 'Word Power Made Easy', is is the correct ...
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0answers
13 views

What's the difference between the singular and plural form of "affection"

This OALD page suggests that affection has two, but very close, meaning based on the plural form: affection: the feeling of liking or loving somebody/something very much and caring about them ...
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2answers
37 views

✳Two feet six (long)

Page 709 of Collins Cobuild English Usage reads If you are expressing size using feet and inches, you do not have to say inches, two foot six long. However, you can't say ✳two feet six. Firstly, is ...
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2answers
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"Begin with F", "begin with an F" or "begin with F's" [closed]

I have a question about singular and plural forms. When you are solving a crossword puzzle with someone and trying to fill a row, which sentence can you say? Fail and flop both begin with F. Fail and ...
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0answers
33 views

Years of hardship has/have . .

I'm wondering if "Years of hardship" takes a singular or plural verb: Years of hardship has/have taken a toll on his health. Twenty years of hardship has/have taken a toll on his health.
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16 views

Participation vs Participations

This is the way I initially phrased my sentence: Some of his most important achievements are his participations in the annual singing contest and the Nottingham cooking contest. My confusion mostly ...
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2answers
22 views

what is / are called

I'd like to know whether "is" or "are" should be used in the following. A lot of what is / are called freelance workers don't earn enough money every month.
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0answers
22 views

Any with singular count noun

I've been having problems with the use of any, I've read that you can use it for negative and questions with non-counts and plural count nouns, but there is an exception that you can use any with ...
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1answer
41 views

Not all pasta is the same

I saw the following sentence in an advertisement: Not all pasta is the same After looking it up on google it seems to be the correct way to say, however I would have said: Not all pasta are the ...
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3answers
1k views

"This kind of particles" or "These kind of particles"

I want to start a sentence with "This kind of particles" but I'm not sure whether this expression is correct. There is only one kind (silicate) of particles that I'm talking about, but there ...
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1answer
40 views

"We will all be a contestant" vs "We will all be contestants"

There is a TV show in which the participants judge each other. What is the correct way to express this idea? We will all be both a contestant and on the jury! We will all be both contestants and on ...
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1answer
116 views

I don't like a dog who barks - "I don't like barking dogs in general" or "There is a dog that barks who I don't like"?

I wonder whether the following examples can have two meanings: talking about something in general talking about a specific something. Do you guys agree? Example 1: I don't like a dog. I think it ...
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1answer
25 views

Can "work experience" be plural?

When I have worked for multiple jobs, and I use "work experience," is it plural? For example, my education and work experience make me a great candidate for the job.
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2answers
61 views

What do native speakers call this home decoration item?

String curtain? Or string curtains?
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0answers
32 views

Limitation or limitations?

I am confused about the following sentence: Despite limitations from a lack of funding, the study for the first time paints a picture of children prone to suicidal thought. Isn't 'a lack of funding' ...
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0answers
24 views

"Draw blood on Day 1, 5 and 6" or "Draw blood on Days 1, 5 and 6"

Should I use plural or singular noun in a sentence like this: "The researchers will draw your blood on Day 1, 5 and 6." vs "…Days 1, 5 and 6."? I think the first sentence is ...
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0answers
17 views

Is "prey were" correct rather than "prey was"? [duplicate]

In Zootopia, I can see the following sentence, A world where prey were scared of predators. According to the learnersdictionary.com, prey is noncountable noun. So, I think prey was should be correct....
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1answer
28 views

Choice of plural or singular form in the structure of "nouns of nouns of nouns ... "

I have come across this sentence: WE, the Heads of State/Government of Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), namely, ... from this link I am wondering why "state/...
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1answer
20 views

use plural verbs or singular verbs with the uncountable noun in this case?

As far as I know, 'spending' is a uncountable noun. In the Cambridge dictionary, it means 'the money that is used for a particular purpose, especially by a government or organization' and is labelled ...
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4answers
2k views

How do native English people know what is a gradable adjective?

Sphenoid: of, relating to, or being a winged compound bone of the base of the cranium I found out we cannot say “this alien is very sphenoid” (this alien has lots of sphenoid bones). Rainy: marked ...
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1answer
24 views

All xxx have - plural vs singular

I am very confused about which of the following two sentences is correct: All mugs have handles. or All mugs have a handle. Grammarly seems to accept both, but are they both okay?
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2answers
22 views

A question about the common noun

I wonder if the following sentence is missing something, isn't it? "It's a long journey from tea leaf to cup of tea." Shouldn't it be added an indefinite article or something before "...
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1answer
43 views

Thanks for your answer/Thanks for your answers

If I want to thank to 10 people, each person gave me one answer, what should I say to them? Is it "thanks for your answer" or "thanks for your answers"? Basically, I've accepted 10 ...
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0answers
12 views

What is the difference between "any reason" and "any reasons"?

She did not give any reason for being late. She did not give any reasons for being late. I wonder if there is any differences/difference😁 between these to sentences or not!
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2answers
18 views

“Empty the soup into a saucepan and simmer gently for ten minutes.“

Minute: used in spoken English to mean a very short time “Empty the soup into a saucepan and simmer gently for ten minutes.” https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/minute I think “minute”...
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1answer
26 views

When should you pluralize an adjectival noun?

When should you pluralize an adjectival noun? I am not sure if both are valid, I think both might be valid, so I am wondering if both are ok or not? So, for example, you may want to say "Apple ...
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1answer
33 views

Should it be "street" or "streets" in the following sentence?

In this sentence, the difference is clear, I think: He put on his jacket and ventured into the street(s). street: one specific street. streets: the streets of that city/town. In the following ...
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1answer
43 views

Singular or plural with 'and'

When we join two or more nouns with 'and', we usually use plural verbs, as in Lara and Pete decide to get married. I know there are exceptions. For example, when we think of them all as one thing. ...
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2answers
107 views

Why use "has" instead of "have" in "Has your course started yet?", since it is in the second person?

I saw this question in the book "English Grammar in Use, Fifth Edition" by Louise Hashemi on page 15, the question is: ...(your course/start yet)? Not Yet. It starts next week. And the ...
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2answers
218 views

Confusing usage of Taliban as a single entity collective noun

Taliban take key city close to Kabul as U.S. troops arrive to assist evacuations Taliban advances in Afghanistan, U.S. and Britain to evacuate embassies They are titles of Reuters' news. I can't ...
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1answer
27 views

singular vs. plural with parenthetical "and" clause

Which of the following versions of a sentence, if either, is less standard or accepted?: My fortune, and indeed my virtue, stands on my convictions. My fortune, and indeed my virtue, stand on my ...
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1answer
32 views

Should I use singular or plural noun in this sentence?

Which one of the following sentences is correct? I think people are more concerned these days about being successful in their career. I think people are more concerned these days about being ...
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2answers
48 views

I take drugs, or I take drug

I only smoke marijuana and not any other substance so you can say that I take drugs. I wrote drug in singular, but I was wondering why it sounded off. When we say drugs can it refer to many drugs of ...
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1answer
29 views

I am not sure how antecedents and plurals work. when you are talking about "criticisms"

I am very open to any constructive criticisms, as they make you better. Is it okay if I say criticisms and they in one sentence?
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1answer
27 views

When do we use "Interaction‎s" (plural of Interaction‎)?

Is there any rule about when you should use "interaction‎" and when you should use "interaction‎s"? And if there isn't, can you give me examples in which "interaction‎s" ...
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1answer
25 views

more than a third is/are exported [duplicate]

In the following sentence, should "are" or "is" be used? The country produces about one million tons of oil a year. More than a third are/is exported to Europe. The issue is ...
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1answer
26 views

difference between the usages of singular and plural nouns in the following sentence

Here is a sentence that is confusing me: I don't like stories that have unhappy endings. I am confused about the usage of the plural noun 'endings'. I think a story normally has only one ending. So ...
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1answer
23 views

After "noun and/or noun", do I have to use "have" or "has"?

The relative importance and/or fairness among users (has/have) not been addressed. For "and", "have" is correct, but for "or", "has" is correct. Which is the ...
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12answers
5k views

"Four is better" vs "Four are better". Which one is correct?

I want to write: One cake is good, but 4 {is,are} better! Which one ("are" or "is") should I use? Looking at examples online it seems that both are acceptable. So here are my ...
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1answer
101 views

What is the Subject-Verb Agreement of "a pair of shoes"? [duplicate]

I always assumed that "a pair of shoes" followed in the footsteps of "a pair of scissors" or "a pair of jeans" and have a singular verb when used in a passive sentence. ...
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1answer
21 views

Plural in ‘Flat’, ‘Unit’, ‘Apt’, ‘Ste’

This and this are examples of addresses in the UK. Unit 1–3, ×× Corporation Street, Birmingham, B4 ×××, United Kingdom It covers Units 1, 2 and 3. (Or ‘it covers Unit 1, 2 and 3’?) Unit 2–3, ×× Bard ...

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