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Subject-Verb Agreement

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Andre Gutierrez

on 25 February 2013

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Transcript of Subject-Verb Agreement

Andre F. Gutierrez
Daniela A. Seda Rule 8: Subject-Verb Agreement Some connecting words & phrases can make the subject seem plural, but it stays singular. Practice! The term number can imply a singular or plural subject. Wrong: The joys of climbing mountains, especially if one is a novice climber without the proper equipment, escapes me. 1.) The logical structure of his complicated and rather torturous arguments are always the same. The verb MUST agree with the noun in number Always remember: Singular & plural nouns take different forms of the verb Sometimes. a simple -s changes. He walks. They walk. singular plural Other times, there is a more drastic change. He is fast. They are fast. singular plural Also, you can hear the mistake, but, several elements in the sentence may make it hard to determine the correct number for the verb. It might be confusing when many words are between the subject & the verb. Ex. The prepositional phrase, of, can qualify a noun, making it singular Wrong: That stack of socks, although they do not stink, are dirty. Also, collective nouns are singular, unless they are emphasizing an individual. Wrong: A majority of the jury think the defendent is guilty. Ex. Ex. Wrong: A number of fans hopes for a mere glimpse of his handsome face. Wrong: The number of fans who hopes to catch a glimpse of his handsome face seem to grow exponentially each time the tabloids write a story of his seclusion. "a" represents a plural subject. "the" represents a singular subject. When a subject contains two (or more) nouns connected by nor or or, the verb agrees with the closest one. Wrong: Either the senators or the president are misinformed. Wrong: Either the president or the senators is misinformed. Wrong: The chairman, along with the treasurer and the secretary, are misinformed. together with If it still sounds awkward, rephrase the sentence. Along with the treasurer and the secretary, the chairman is misinformed. When writing in the subjunctive, you should use "were" instead of "was", and "had" instead of "has", "have", or "would have". Awkward: If I was in charge, we would not move to Europe. Correct: The joys of climbing mountains, especially if one is a novice climber without the proper equipment, escape me. Correct: That stack of socks, although they do not stink, is dirty. Correct: A majority of the jury thinks the defendent is guilty. Correct: A number of fans hope for a mere glimpse of his handsome face. Correct: The number of fans who hope to catch a glimpse of his handsome face seem to grow exponentially each time the tabloids write a story of his seclusion. Correct: Either the senators or the president is misinformed. Correct: Either the president or the senators are misinformed. along with in addition to as well as besides Correct: The chairman, along with the treasurer and the secretary, is misinformed. Correct: If I were in charge, we would not move to Europe. 2.) A case of bananas have been sent to the local distributor in compensation for the fruit that was damged in transit. 4.) Neither the shipping clerk who packed the equipment nor the truckers who transported it admits responsibility for the dented circuit box. 3.) Everyone in the US, as well as the Canadians, expect the timber agreement to fall through. Copy the following sentences and fix or replace any incorrect verbs. You may rephrase the sentence if necessary. 1.) The logical structure of his complicated and rather torturous arguments is always the same. 2.) A case of bananas has been sent to the local distributor in compensation for the fruit that was damged in transit. 3.) Everyone in the US expects the timber agreement to fall through, as well as the Canadians. 4.) Neither the shipping clerk who packed the equipment nor the truckers who transported it admit responsibility for the dented circuit box.
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