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  1. #1
    Deepurple is offline Member
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    As much as

    Since "much" is a qualifier for uncountable nouns while "many" for countable, I just wondered if "as much as" should be replaced by "as many as" in the sentence below because of "four years"(countable) that follows:

    "The shortfall is so severe that the wait can be as much as four years."

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Atchan is offline Key Member
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    Re: As much as

    COMPARISON OF ADJECTIVES

    Comparisons of Quantity

    To show no difference: as much as , as many as, as few as, as little as

    as many as / as few as + countable nouns
    as much as / as little as + uncountable nouns

  3. #3
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    Re: As much as

    Quote Originally Posted by atchan View Post
    COMPARISON OF ADJECTIVES

    Comparisons of Quantity

    To show no difference: as much as , as many as, as few as, as little as

    as many as / as few as + countable nouns
    as much as / as little as + uncountable nouns
    This is most useful, but I am not so sure it applies directly to the sentence at hand. Note that the various examples given on the site you are referring to (English Grammar: ADJECTIVES : COMPARISON OF QUANTITY - AS MUCH AS, AS MANY AS, AS FEW AS, AS LITTLE AS)
    are all of this type, "They have as many children as us."

    Deepurple has brought something different however:
    "The shortfall is so severe that the wait can be as much as four years."

    Now, if this sentence were, "The shortfall is so severe that the wait can be as many years as four," the rule would most certainly apply.

    However, in the sentence at hand "as much as" seems to refer to "the wait." In that sense, I believe that either form would work. We might consider the sentence to be short for, "The shortfall is so severe that the wait can be as much time as four years."

    I would therefore accept either "as much as" or "as many as."

    I hope others will join in on this little controversy. I confess that I feel I am standing on less than firm ground here.
    Last edited by kfredson; 10-Jul-2010 at 14:07.

  4. #4
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Re: As much as

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepurple View Post
    Since "much" is a qualifier for uncountable nouns while "many" for countable, I just wondered if "as much as" should be replaced by "as many as" in the sentence below because of "four years"(countable) that follows:

    "The shortfall is so severe that the wait can be as much as four years."

    Thank you.
    I agree that "as much as" follows from "the wait", and I also would say "as much as" in Deepurple's sentence.

    .......the wait can be as (much)(long) as four years.

    Some might say 'as many as four years', but I definitely prefer "as much as......".

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