Results 1 to 5 of 5
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Feb 2013
    • Posts: 79
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    Plural or Singular Verb? Inches 'has' or 'have'?

    One to six inches of snow is/are expected.

    Eight to twelve inches of snow has/have fallen.

    'Inches' is plural, but we can also be referring to a lump sum which could necessitate a singular verb for each example above.

    Singular or plural verb for each?

    Thanks

    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Canada
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: May 2011
    • Posts: 4,271
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: Plural or Singular Verb? Inches 'has' or 'have'?

    Quote Originally Posted by frogboxer View Post
    One to six inches of snow is/are expected.

    Eight to twelve inches of snow has/have fallen.

    'Inches' is plural, but we can also be referring to a lump sum which could necessitate a singular verb for each example above.

    Singular or plural verb for each?

    Thanks
    In terms of usage, it's inches (of snow) that have fallen or are expected, so it's the plural form of the verb that applies here.

    Snow is expected. Inches of snow are expected.

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 17,569
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: Plural or Singular Verb? Inches 'has' or 'have'?

    When you refer to a quantity as a mass, you usually use the singular.
    Three miles isn't too far to walk.
    Twenty dollars is too much to pay for one cake.
    Six inches of snow is enough to shovel. One to six inches of snow is expected.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Canada
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: May 2011
    • Posts: 4,271
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: Plural or Singular Verb? Inches 'has' or 'have'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    When you refer to a quantity as a mass, you usually use the singular.
    Three miles isn't too far to walk.
    Twenty dollars is too much to pay for one cake.
    Six inches of snow is enough to shovel. One to six inches of snow is expected.
    Hi,
    You obviously know what you're talking about, so I defer to your superior knowledge.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 24,991
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #5

    Re: Plural or Singular Verb? Inches 'has' or 'have'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    When you refer to a quantity as a mass, you usually use the singular.
    Three miles isn't too far to walk.
    Twenty dollars is too much to pay for one cake.
    Six inches of snow is enough to shovel. One to six inches of snow is expected.
    I'm with Barb on this one. The only way I can attempt to explain it is to show a potential addition to the beginning of each sentence which might explain it.

    A distance of three miles isn't too far to walk.
    The amount (twenty dollars) is too much to pay for one cake.
    A snowfall of six inches is enough to shovel. A snowfall of one to six inches is expected.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 23-Feb-2013, 18:05
  2. the use of plural and singular verb to be
    By jehaddina in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 18-May-2012, 16:54
  3. plural or singular verb?
    By bid213 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 17-Apr-2008, 00:26
  4. singular or plural verb?
    By trapanipalermo in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 25-Mar-2008, 18:29
  5. singular or plural verb
    By daisy1352 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-Apr-2007, 23:52

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •