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Thread: police?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default police?

    The police was called?
    OR
    The police were called?
    And why?
    Tia...
    Catherine C.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: police?

    The police were called.

    "Police" is a collective noun, meaning that "police" includes a number of people, rather than being a single entity. "Were" is used when there is more than one person/thing involved, where as "was" is used for a single person/thing.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: police?

    Quote Originally Posted by Catherine C. View Post
    The police was called?
    OR
    The police were called?
    And why?
    Tia...
    Catherine C.
    It is 'The police were called."

    As a noun, 'the police' are plural, because they are the officers of the 'polis' - the Ancient Greek word for a city state, from which 'police' derives.

    In many European Romance languages, the derivation (and the plural) is more obvious - for example, 'policia' in Spanish.

  4. #4
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
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      • Member Type:
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    Default Re: police?

    In American English we usually treat our collective nouns as singular, the team was victorious, the company is bankrupt, the army is advancing however, police is always a plural in AE, also.

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