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How do we check if the VERB agrees with the SUBJECT?

Some basics to help us decide whether the subject and verb are in agreement.

To find out the subject of a particular verb,

we ask the questions

who/what

BEFORE the verb.

1. The subject and the verb should agree with each other in number and person.

What is meant bynumber?

By number we mean how many.

One or more than one?

We see if the subject is singular or plural. If singular, then we use a singular verb and if plural we use a plural verb. Remember we add ‘s’ to make a verb singular!

What is meant by Person?

The personal pronoun has 3 persons:

In the subject position the

first person - I

second person - you

third person-he, she, we, they, it, who.

2. If 2 or more singular nouns or pronouns are joined by “and” they require a plural verb, but if they suggest one idea to the mind, or refer to the same person, a singular verb is used.

3. Words joined to a singular subject by with, as well as, etc., are parenthetical. The words should therefore be put in the singular.

4. Two or more singular subjects joinedby or, nor, the verb is singular. But if one of the subjects is plural , the verb must be plural and should be closer to the verb.

5. If the subjects are of different persons, then the verb agrees with the person it is nearer to.

6. Either, neither, each, everyone, many a , must be followed by a singular verb.

7. Two nouns qualified by each or every, even though connected by and requiresa singular verb.

8. Nouns plural in form , but singular in meaning take a singular verb.- news politics, wages, mathematics

Pains and means can be singular/ plural, but construction should be consistent.

Great pains have been taken/ much pains has been taken

9. Nouns singular in form , but plural in meaning take a plural verb.

Twelve dozen cost one hundred rupees

10. NONE,though properly singular, takes a plural verb.

11. A collective noun when thought of as one whole, takes a singular verb but when we mean the individuals of the group we use the plural verb. We must be consistent

12. When a plural noun is a proper name for some single object/ collective unit, the singular verb is used

The United States, Gulliver’s travels

13. When a plural noundenotes some specific quantity or amount as a whole, the verb is generally singular.

Fifteen minutes is allowed to each speaker.

Three parts of the business is left for me to do.

Subject-verb agreement.

1. Sita, in spite of her family’s support , object to this proposal.

2. The jury were unanimous in its acquittal.

3. The jury argues among themselves before taking decisionsKey:

1. Sita, in spite of her family’s support , objects to this proposal.

2. The jury were/was unanimous in their/its acquittal.

3. The jury argue among themselves before taking decisions.

..

Subject verb agreement.

4. Fifteen kilos are too much to carry in a bag.

5. What he believes in and what he practices is two different things.

6. Preethi as well as Rajani havegone to the supermarket.

Key:

4. Fifteen kilos is too much to carry in a bag.

5. What he believes in and what he practices are two different things.

6. Preethi as well as Rajani has gone to the supermarket.

Subject verb agreement.

7. Either Soman or his colleagues has gone to the supermarket.

8. None of the players on our team is likely to make it to the national scene.

9.Disagreement on issues in the bill lead to a furore in the assembly.

Key:

7. Either Soman or his colleagues have gone to the supermarket.

8. None of the players on our team are likely to make it to the national scene.

9. Disagreement on issues in the bill leads to a furore in the assembly.

Subject verb agreement.

10. The horse and carriage are in the station.

11. Many an...
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