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Thread: adding -s

  1. #11
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    Re: adding -s

    Hi Jack,

    What you need to remember is that many nouns can be both countable and uncountable in different contexts.


    1. 'You need to do some killing in this game.'
    2. 'You need to do some killings in this game.'

    'Some' is not singular or plural; it is a determiner (a kind of adjective), which do not have number (singular/plural) in English.

    'Doing some killing' means enjoying that activity (uncountable, not singular) for awhile.

    'Doing some killings' means enjoying several individual assassinations or murders (countable plural).


    What do these mean?

    3.'There is no tax on food.' (In general-- Yes, uncountable nutritional material!)
    4.'There is no tax on foods.' (specific foods --Yes, types of foodstuffs, countable!)


    5. 'What types of food do you like?'
    6. 'What types of foods do you like?'

    Both OK, for the same reason- speaker is considering the nutrient material in (5) and the individual types in (6).


    Are these correct? What do these mean?

    7. 'They are couples.' They are multiples of two: 4 people (2 couples), 6 people (3 couples), 8 people (4 couples).

    8. 'They are a couple.' They are one group of two, they are one pair, they are two people.


    What are the subject and verb for this sentence?

    9. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the forth that matter. (Sorry, Jack, the sentence makes no sense, and I cannot right it, so I cannot find S and V.) ('Why isn't 'matter' plural?'-- because 'matter' seems to refer to one topic-- it is preceded by the singular demonstrative 'that' rather than the plural 'those'.)
    Last edited by Mister Micawber; 06-Nov-2004 at 16:26.

  2. #12
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    Re: adding -s

    Thanks.
    5. 'What types of food do you like?'
    6. 'What types of foods do you like?'

    Both OK, for the same reason- speaker is considering the nutrient material in (5) and the individual types in (6).
    So these two mean the same?

    ('Why isn't 'matter' plural?'-- because 'matter' seems to refer to one topic-- it is preceded by the singular demonstrative 'that' rather than the plural 'those'.)
    9. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the forth that matter.
    I mean why doesn't 'matter' have a -s added to it? 'That' is singular so should't matter have a -s added to it? What is 'that' referring to?

    I am trying to say this:
    1. That kills him. (Correct)
    2. That kill him. (Incorrect)

    What do these mean?
    3. Generation after generation
    4. Generations after generations.
    5. Generation after generations.
    6. Generations after generation.
    Last edited by jack; 06-Nov-2004 at 22:44.

  3. #13
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    Re: adding -s

    Good morning, Jack.


    '9. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the forth that matter.'

    I was taking 'matter' for a noun, Jack-- is it a verb? As I said, the sentence makes no sense, so I could not figure out the structure. Is it:

    'There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the four that matter'?

    In that case, the subject of the clause is 'four', which is plural, so plural verb 'matter'.


    In your examples:

    1. (This is the song) that kills him.
    2. (These are the songs) that kill him.

    Both are correct, but depend on the noun they modify. The first modifies a singular or uncountable noun; the second a plural noun.


    3. 'Generation after generation' This is the stock phrase, which means 'down through (evolutionary) time, from parent to offspring to parent to offspring and so on and on''. The other three phrases you give are meaningless, artificially-generated, permutations of this one.

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    Re: adding -s

    Thanks.

    1. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the four that matter.
    In that case, the subject of the clause is 'four', which is plural, so plural verb 'matter'.
    So 'four' is plural?

    2. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the four one that matter. (Should 'matter' be 'matters' if it is 'four one'?)

    3. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the forth one that matter. (Should 'matter' be 'matters' if it is 'forth one'?)
    4. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the forth one that matters. (Is this correct?)

    5. There are many reasons but I'm going to talk about the forth that matter.
    What if it is 'forth'? Should it be 'matters' then? I saw this in the newspaper, maybe it is a typo.

    What do these mean? Is 'wait' countable?
    3. There are long waits at the ferry terminal.
    4. There is a long wait at the ferry terminal.
    Last edited by jack; 07-Nov-2004 at 00:13.

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    Re: adding -s

    1. the four (reasons) that matter.


    The verb 'matter' agrees in number with the omitted noun 'reasons'.


    2a. the *four one that matter.
    2b. the four ones that matter.


    The phrase 'four one' is ungrammatical (*). The adjective 'four', meaning more than one, cannot modify a singular noun. It needs to modify a plural noun e.g., four ones. If we delete the adjective 'four', the result would be,


    2c. the one that matters. SINGULAR
    2d. the ones that matter. PLURAL
    3e. the four ones that matter. PLURAL


    If we modify the noun 'one(s)' with the adjective 'fourth' (note the spelling, please), it's the noun 'one(s)' that agrees in number with the verb, not the adjective 'fourth'.


    3a. the fourth one that matters.
    3b. the fourth ones that matter.


    We get the same number agreement if we replace the noun 'one(s)' with the noun 'reason(s)'.


    4a. the fourth reason that matters. PLURAL (i.e., They matter)
    4b. the fourth reasons that matter. SINGLUAR (i.e., It matters)

    4c. the fourth that matters. (Singular Verb signals the omission of a singular subject)


    In 4c., the singular noun 'reason' has been omitted. We know it's a singular noun because the verb is singular.


    Below, 'waits' functions as a plural noun, and 'wait' functions as a singular noun. Both are grammatically correct.

    3. There are long waits at the ferry terminal.
    4. There is a long wait at the ferry terminal.

  6. #16
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    Re: adding -s

    Thanks for the detailed explanation.


    4a. the fourth reason that matters. PLURAL (i.e., They matter)
    4b. the fourth reasons that matter. SINGLUAR (i.e., It matters)
    Cas, did you mean this?
    4a. the fourth reason that matters. SINGLUAR (i.e., It matters)
    4b. the fourth reasons that matter. PLURAL (i.e., They matter)




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    Re: adding -s

    That's right. Good eye, and I am gald to see you're catching on! Cheers

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    Re: adding -s

    Thanks.

    Okay I have finally found the article online:
    http://www.canadianbusiness.com/opin...27_62202_62202
    1. There are many good reasons, but I'm going to give the four that matter. (Is 'reasons' omitted? I am trying to say this: But I'm going to give the four reasons that matter.

    http://www.canadianbusiness.com/opin...27_62202_62202
    2. After all, RIM's e-mail technology is built around server software that RIM sells to companies and telecommunications providers. (I don't get it. What is the subject and verb for this sentence? Why is 'companies', 'telecommunications', and 'providers' plural? Why isn't it 'company and telecommunication providers'?

  9. #19
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    Re: adding -s

    You're welcome.

    The writer omits the second 'reasons' because it can be picked up from the context.

    1. There are many good reasons, but I'm going to give the four (reasons) that matter.

    The pink portion is a noun, a plural noun, and it functions as an adjective. It modifies 'companies'. The subjects are in blue and the verbs are in red.


    2. After all, RIM's e-mail technology is built around server software that RIM sells to companies and telecommunications providers.

    This is a"to-be" linking structure. The underlined portion functions as a predicate adjective. It tells us more about the subject. 'that RIM....' is a relative clause. It modifies the noun 'software'. 'companies' and 'providers' are nouns, plural nouns, and they function as they object of the preposition 'to'. The entire phrase 'to companies and telecommunciations providers' functions as the object of the verb 'sells'.


  10. #20
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    Re: adding -s

    I still don't really get part:

    1. That RIM sells to companies and telecommunications providers. (After 'to' don't you have to use the base word? And I still don't understand how there can be two plural words next to each other 'telecommunications providers'. Thanks.)

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