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  1. #1
    Pierce111 is offline Member
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    Default "are" or "is" for countable nouns in specific phrases

    I have some doubts whether I should use form "are" or "is" in specific phrases. When I watch TV I sometimes hear that people (natives) use both those forms in those phrases and it makes me confused.
    I will write below such pairs of sentences and I mark green my preference

    1.
    a) There are many cars on the street.
    b) There is many cars on the street.

    2.
    a) There is a few cars on the street.
    b) There are a few cars on the street.

    3.
    a) There are few cars on the street.
    b) There is few cars on the street.

    4.
    a) There is a lot of cars on the street.
    b) There are a lot of cars on the street.

    5.
    a) There are lots of cars on the street.
    b) There is lots of cars on the street.

    6.
    a) There are some cars on the street.
    b) There is some cars on the street.

    Please, give me the clear answer which of those are correct.
    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: "are" or "is" for countable nouns in specific phrases

    Quote Originally Posted by Pierce111 View Post
    I have some doubts whether I should use form "are" or "is" in specific phrases. When I watch TV I sometimes hear that people (natives) use both those forms in those phrases and it makes me confused.
    I will write below such pairs of sentences and I mark green my preference

    1.
    a) There are many cars on the street.
    b) There is many cars on the street.

    2.
    a) There is a few cars on the street.
    b) There are a few cars on the street.

    3.
    a) There are few cars on the street.
    b) There is few cars on the street.

    4.
    a) There is a lot of cars on the street.
    b) There are a lot of cars on the street.

    5.
    a) There are lots of cars on the street.
    b) There is lots of cars on the street.

    6.
    a) There are some cars on the street.
    b) There is some cars on the street.

    Please, give me the clear answer which of those are correct.
    Thanks in advance.
    In each one of those examples, "There are" is correct. You will hear "There's a lot of ..." in spoken English because we're lazy when we speak and the contraction "There's" comes much more readily than "There're" or "There are", but it is grammatically incorrect. If you're going to use "many", "lots of" or "a lot of" with a countable noun, then you need to use "There are".

    With uncountable nouns, use "There is" (There is a lot of water, there is a lot of sand, there is lots of gas). You will note that you can't use "many" with uncountable nouns. "Lots of" sounds clunky but we do use it. I would stick with "There is + a lot of" for uncountable nouns.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  3. #3
    Winwin2011 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: "are" or "is" for countable nouns in specific phrases

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post

    With uncountable nouns, use "There is" (There is a lot of water, there is a lot of sand, there is lots of gas). You will note that you can't use "many" with uncountable nouns. "Lots of" sounds clunky but we do use it. I would stick with "There is + a lot of" for uncountable nouns.
    Hi ems,

    You said "Lots of" sounds clunky but we do use it". If we use "lots of" in the following sentences,
    which one is correct?

    1. There are lots of water.
    2. There is lots of water.

    Thanks.
    Last edited by Winwin2011; 30-Dec-2012 at 15:32.

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: "are" or "is" for countable nouns in specific phrases

    Quote Originally Posted by Winwin2011 View Post
    Hi ems,

    You said "Lots of" sounds clunky but we do use it". If we use "lots of" in the following sentences,
    which one is correct?

    1. There are lots of water.
    2. There is lots of water.

    Thanks.
    If you look back at what I wrote, I clearly said "With uncountable nouns, use "there is"..." It makes no difference whether you use "lots of" or "a lot of", it will still be preceded by "There is". I was simply pointing out that "lots of" sounds clunky used with [some] uncountable nouns.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 30-Dec-2012 at 17:29. Reason: Inexplicably missing words
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  5. #5
    Pierce111 is offline Member
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    Default Re: "are" or "is" for countable nouns in specific phrases

    One more question connected with this subject. Are these phrases: "many of", "much of" "little of" correct?
    e.g.:
    there are many of cars
    there is much of water
    there is little of water

  6. #6
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: "are" or "is" for countable nouns in specific phrases

    Quote Originally Posted by Pierce111 View Post
    One more question connected with this subject. Are these phrases: "many of", "much of" "little of" correct?
    e.g.:
    there are many of cars
    there is much of water
    there is little of water
    They are all incorrect.

    There are many cars.
    There are lots of cars.
    There are a lot of cars.

    There is a lot of water.
    There is much water. (Note that this is very rarely used.)

    There is little water.
    There is a little water.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

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