Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [uncountable-nouns]

The tag has no usage guidance.

0
votes
2answers
25 views

“Through critical engagement with philosophical texts” or “Through a critical engagement with philosophical texts”

Through (a) critical engagement with philosophical texts, I examine the phenomena and provide an in-depth analysis. This is a line I am writing. The noun "engagement" seems tricky. Scrolling down ...
0
votes
2answers
30 views

“Comment on their character” or “comment on their characters”?

I would like to say a few words to comment on their character(s). I am wondering if "character" in the sense of qualities of personality is a count noun and can be pluralized. Macmillan and Cambridge ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Is “There were hundreds of students, not much of whom were girls” correct?

Is the sentence " "There were hundreds of students, not much of whom were girls" correct? Can we use much instead of many in these structure.
1
vote
2answers
50 views

When is “labor” countable and what does “labors” mean exactly?

I saw a line in the English subtitles of a non-English show: Stop playing. Go all out to fight me, or you will end up using up all of your labors. I first went and made sure the subtitles were ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

“Ramen” or “ramens” in “He bought a pack of ramen(s)”

He bought a pack of ramen. He bought a pack of ramens. He bought two packs of ramen. He bought two packs of ramens. He bought a ramen. He bought two ramens. Which ones are grammatical?
1
vote
2answers
15 views

as much / many as

I'd like to know whether many or much should be used in the following: a. A whale could weigh as much / many as two tons. b. The company bought as much / many as two tons of cotton. I'd ...
4
votes
3answers
930 views

different “culture” or different “cultures”

I believe this is simple, yet crucial and time-worthy to know amongst ELLs. As a traveler, I've experienced different culture/cultures across the world. First off, culture is an uncountable noun. ...
2
votes
1answer
41 views

can we say “a much”?

My new phone has a much longer battery life. The sentence is copied from Cambridge dictionary. Why they have used “a” with uncountable noun "life"? Also can we write "a much"? We use much with ...
2
votes
2answers
64 views

Is “profit” a special case?

Company profits are down from last year's figures. (Copied from Cambridge dictionary.) 1) Why don't we use a possessive s? 2) Why do we use plural profits? 3) Why don't we use “the”? When you ...
4
votes
2answers
358 views

Is “prose” ever a count noun?

He writes a crystalline prose (source) I find this countable usage of "prose" from the Oxford Dictionaries very unusual. I have never seen "prose" used countably. In contrast, several dictionaries ...
0
votes
1answer
30 views

about using “a” or “the” before the feeling noun “content”

This question is about whether using a or the is possible or not in front of a noun that means a feeling, which, in this post's case, is content(satisfaction). The sentence below is from the entry ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Is the word “news” always singular?

Using Google Translate, I have this translation from Russian to English: каковы спортивные новости? what are the sports news? I know, that the word "news" is uncountable, so it is ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

countable and uncountable at the same time. What does that mean?

In Cambridge online dictionary there are nouns which can be countable or uncountable at the same time. Example https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/society?q=Societies 1) What does ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

Is “release” countable when used to mean “to let go” or “to make available”?

Is "release" a count noun or mass noun in the meaning of "let someone or something out of a place"? I see conflicting information from different dictionaries, even within the same dictionary. ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

Determiner all + uncountable noun - which of the following sentences is correct?

All water has been filtered. or All water have been filtered. ? I've already searched about this especially in youtube. From what I learned, if it's an uncountable noun after determiner all, it ...
4
votes
1answer
100 views

Have a good command of something – is “command” countable or uncountable?

I am confused, the following examples are from the Oxford dictionary, all from the same entry (2). Why in some cases it is "a command" and in some it is treated as uncountable? ‘he had a brilliant ...
1
vote
2answers
44 views

Indefinite article before uncountable nouns

Please help me understand why the indefinite article is used in this case: "I had a marvellous time!"
1
vote
1answer
61 views

When is “dress” a mass noun?

I find the singular/uncountable usage of "dress" strange in this sentence. Expansive skirts on fashionable dress of the period proved the perfect blank canvas to showcase chintzes lush with ...
2
votes
1answer
33 views

The countability of “memoir” and “stocktaking” in this sentence

I find two nouns in this sentence from a Time article very strange. The Atlantic columns are enriched with personal memoir, and a stocktaking, as Coates takes the reader through his own life and ...
19
votes
9answers
5k views

What's the correct unit for homework?

Consider the case when a teacher has thirty students in the class. The noun "homework" is uncountable so he cannot say "I have thirty homeworks to grade every week." My question is that if there is ...
2
votes
3answers
301 views

How to ‘guess’ if a noun is countable or uncountable?

Not all the time I have access to dictionaries. In school, I learned that abstract nouns are not countable; however, English is an ever-evolving language and nothing can be so certain here including ...
3
votes
2answers
35 views

‘A fried rice’, ‘ fried rice’, or ‘ a bowl of fried rice’

I came across this sentence in an English book: A fried rice is 2,500 dong. I know that rice is a mass noun so it cannot be counted, and if ‘fried rice’ refers to the name of a dish, it is correct ...
5
votes
4answers
209 views

Using “fashion” countably vs. uncountably: “in (a) timely/similar/dramatic fashion”

I have always thought fashion is countable when used to signify a particular manner (e.g., I will get that done in a timely fashion), but I just encountered these sentences in the Oxford Dictionaries (...
3
votes
2answers
145 views

“paint”: mass noun vs count noun

Jackson Pollock dropped paints on canvas seemingly at random. (Source) I have always thought the noun "paint" is uncountable when referring to color/colored liquid/solid pigment. But the above ...
0
votes
1answer
82 views

How do we come to know a noun in a sentence is a countable or uncountable noun?

Road is countable and uncountable noun. (see Cambridge) ex. The traffic on the road was quite bad. Definite article [the] is placed before road. As per the rule the can be placed before countable ...
2
votes
1answer
73 views

“A couple of weights” Is it grammatical to use “weight” as a countable noun?

I heard a line in the movie The Reluctant Fundamentalist Looks like you picked up a couple of weights, too, huh? The speaker of this line apparently suggests that the other party has gained weight....
0
votes
3answers
137 views

Consultation: “uncountable noun” or “countable noun”

I have a question related to usage of the word consultation. Can you please tell me if I should use singular or plural form of the word in the following context? Consultations require a personal ...
2
votes
2answers
42 views

Does this noun phrase (a variable name) take a singular or plural verb?

I'm writing a codebook that defines variables in a data set. Should the verb of the following sentence be singular or plural (refer/refers)? (Note that the italics appear in original; they are, ...
3
votes
2answers
63 views

any reason behind writing looks are?

I know that the noun looks usually takes plural form, eg: Her looks are deceptive. But since looks is an uncountable noun, why does it take a plural verb? Shouldn't it be treated like the other ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Much problem/much problems?

Let's say you are describing your future house's space. Spaciousness is key so I would not have much problem/problems moving around places in the house. I know that ''problem'' is countable noun, ...
20
votes
4answers
6k views

Can “staff” ever be pluralized?

I am under the impression that the word staff is uncountable/singular when referring to a collection of employees in a company. This is corroborated by some online sources I have found: Macmillan and ...
2
votes
2answers
57 views

In the sentence of concern, should I use the plural form of the noun?

If you like a song, and you think it's catchy, could you say this? Songs don't get much catchier than this. My concern is the plural songs, when people say things similar to Life can't/doesn't ...
2
votes
1answer
69 views

The police or police [duplicate]

He must have called the police. OR He must have called police. I think we use the first one when we know about a specific group of police officers which we have called and the second one, when, ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Why some countable nouns treated as uncountable?

since the inception of the iPod we have seen numerous audio formats come to market yet only a select few of them have been adopted on a mass scale. (Source: What is the best audio format? - ...
3
votes
2answers
103 views

Isn't “fog” uncountable when referring to a weather phenomenon?

I came across an example sentence on Merriam Webster: a climate marked by heavy fogs Isn't fog a noncount noun when used to refer to weather, according to the Cambridge Dictionary. The ODO and the ...
2
votes
1answer
204 views

Why can “core” be a plural form of “core”?

According to WordHippo: The noun core can be countable or uncountable. In more general, commonly used, contexts, the plural form will also be core. However, in more specific contexts, ...
3
votes
2answers
861 views

Collective noun query: “A fleet of cars are parked.”

Which of the following is correct according to the rule of collective nouns: A fleet of cars are parked. A fleet of car are parked. A fleet of car is parked.
2
votes
1answer
37 views

Is it “human and physical capitals” or “human and physical capital”?

I am writing an essay that has this clause: Due to the flight of human and physical capitals as a result of lower transportation costs,... It gave me a pause because I realize "capital" in this ...
0
votes
1answer
93 views

Impact, countable or uncountable?

This assumption has a negligible impact on the study. This assumption has negligible impact on the study. Which one between the two above sentences is correct ?
3
votes
1answer
60 views

how much deposit?

Dictionaries typically say the noun deposit is countable, but a Google search shows there are some instances of "how much deposit" on some British and Australian sites. Do you think it's natural to ...
2
votes
1answer
115 views

Does “begin work” sound natural?

I came across a line in a book: The indigotin would be dissolved in vats of alkali to make a yellowish dye, indigo white. It was then ready for the dyers to begin work. Begin work here sounds ...
-1
votes
1answer
53 views

Thanks yenaled!

I am very sorry to ask you people about this question. My question is: Is "yenaled" a word in English? If yes, kindly, give me its example from any certified dictionary. My context is: One of my ...
4
votes
1answer
70 views

Why “desert” in the following examples are used as uncountable?

Below are some dictionary examples in which the noun desert is used as an uncountable: this area of the country is mostly desert (Longman) drought and deforestation are turning fragile ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

My favorite fruit is grape/grapes

Let's say you are asked by your teacher what is your favorite fruit, then you say: "my favorite fruit is grape/grapes" Which one is correct in terms of the general selection according to what I ...
5
votes
7answers
2k views

How many pieces of garlic? How much garlic? uncountable noun

I learned that we should say How much gravel do you have now? since "gravel" is an uncountable noun, but it's also okay to say How many pieces of gravel do you have now? Then, how about garlic,...
2
votes
1answer
162 views

Singular vs. plural in the object of this sentence

These two sentences appear on the same page of an online dictionary. Possessive pronouns are pronouns that demonstrate ownerships. Possessive pronouns include my, mine, our, ours, its, his, ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

their wrath or their wraths?

When talking about a group of people, e.g. project managers, which of these is more correct: Project managers are generally goodhearted, but here's a list of things you should avoid doing lest you ...
0
votes
2answers
850 views

“Which of the following information is true” or “Which piece of the following information is true”?

I saw this question on a test paper (compiled by a Chinese teaching staff), Which of the following information is true? But I think it's not correct because "information" is an uncountable noun. ...
0
votes
2answers
295 views

Difference between “some” and “any” [duplicate]

Can anybody please tell me what the difference between some and any is? Here are two examples: Can you please give any advice on that? Can you please give some advice on that?
2
votes
3answers
835 views

“There is a fog.” Is the noun used correctly?

My kid saw the scene and told me, There is a fog. Do we use "a" before fog?