Showing posts with label plural. Show all posts
Showing posts with label plural. Show all posts

Monday, April 10, 2017

Happy New Year, New Year’s, or New Years? How to Wish Someone Well in 2018

The last thing you want to worry about when ringing in the new year is where to put the apostrophe. Get the nitty-gritty on New Year, New Year’s, and New Years so you can make a toast at midnight and get your punctuation right while you’re at it.

When is it “New Year’s”?

Use the apostrophe-S in “New Year’s” when you’re talking about December 31 or January 1 resolutions you’re making, or other things that “belong” to the New Year.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Geographical Use of the Definite Article, The

English uses the definite article, the, in front of some geographical names but not in front of others.

Geographical Use of the Definite Article (The) With Country Names

Typically, the article the is not used before the names of countries and territories:

Our flight to the China was canceled.
Our flight to China was canceled.

However, the is used before countries whose names are plural in form:

Have you ever been to Netherlands?

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Irregular Plural Nouns—Learn Patterns to Help You Remember the Tricky Ones

Irregular plural nouns are nouns that do not become plural by adding -s or -es, as most nouns in the English language do. You’re probably familiar with many of these already. For example, the plural form of man is men, not mans. The plural form of woman is women, not womans. There are hundreds of irregular plural nouns, and in truth, you must memorize them through reading and speaking.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Persons vs. People vs. Peoples—What’s the Difference?

Most of the time, people is the correct word to choose as a plural for person. Persons is archaic, and it is safe to avoid using it, except in legal writing, which has its own traditional language. Peoples is only necessary when you refer to distinct ethnic groups (for example, within the same region).

“People” vs. “Persons” as Plurals

Person and people both derive from Latin, but from different words.

Friday, September 19, 2014

There Is vs. There Are: How to Choose?

  • The choice between the phrases there is and there are at the beginning of a sentence is determined by the noun that follows it.
  • Use there is when the noun is singular (“There is a cat”). Use there are when the noun is plural (“There are two cats”).

There Is vs. There Are

You probably know that the choice between is vs. are depends on a noun. In most sentences, the noun comes before the verb.

Friday, March 28, 2014

What do you think about gender-neutral pronouns? Take our weekly poll!

Gender-neutral pronouns are nouns that stand in for one’s name but do not reflect the sex of the referenced person. In contrast, he, she, him, her, his, hers, etc. are gendered pronouns, reflecting the sex of the referenced person. Many gender activists and even some linguists argue that plural gender-neutral pronouns — like they, them, their — are not acceptable substitutes for the unwieldy ‘his or her’, ‘he or she’ and ‘himself or herself’ constructions.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

What Is a Generic Noun?

Generic nouns are nouns that refer to all members of a class or group. They are often used when making generalizations or talking about universal truths. Generic nouns can be singular or plural, and be used with or without articles.

Let’s take, for example, the very simple noun book. When writing a sentence, we might have a certain book in mind.

My book fell in a puddle when I got off the bus.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Are gender-neutral pronouns the wave of the future?

The reader must understand that they are at the mercy of the author’s imagination.

What’s wrong with the sentence above? Some might say there is nothing at all is wrong with it. Others, however, will take issue with the use of ‘they,’ a plural pronoun, in place of the singular ‘reader.’ How can this sentence be corrected? Some would use ‘he’ in place of ‘they,’ with the understanding that masculine pronouns are a stand-in for proper nouns of either gender.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Spoken Language Rules Work In Signed Communication, Too

Language is language, regardless of the way you communicate. A new study by Psychology and Linguistics Professor Iris Berent at Northeastern University demonstrates that similar structures rule communication, and whether communication is via speech or sign is of secondary importance.

Basically, people adhere to certain patterns for what’s permissible in language and reject structures that “seem wrong.” By observing that research subjects with no knowledge of sign language mapped the rules of spoken language onto signs they were shown, researchers learned that ingrained rules play a bigger role than previously thought.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Mustache vs. Moustache: Which Is Correct?

  • Mustache and moustache are both correct spellings of the same word.
  • Mustache is the most common spelling in the United States.
  • Moustache is is used in other English-speaking countries.
  • Mustachio is usually spelled without an “o” in the first syllable, although in the UK it is commonly written as a plural: mustachios.

From the pencil mustache of John Waters to the bushy moustache of General Melchett, upper-lip hair comes in variety of styles.