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    #1

    Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Hi All

    As far as I know it is not possible to add "s" to verbs in simple present tense question sentences. Can anybody explain how it can be possible in the sentence below.

    "Who Says You Can't Go Home?"

    Thanks

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Why do you think "As far as I know it is not possible to add "s" to verbs in simple present tense question sentences"?
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by murat guler View Post
    Hi All

    As far as I know, it is not possible to add "s" to verbs in simple present tense question sentences. Can anybody explain how it can be possible in the sentence below?

    "Who says you can't go home?"

    Thanks.
    It is not only possible, it's necessary.

    Who is always treated as singular, which means the verb should have an s. The question mark doesn't change that.

  3. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Second person singular verbs in the present tense: add an s.

  4. tzfujimino's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    I'm sure you meant the 'third person singular" or "don't add an s".
    (Please correct me if I'm wrong.)

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    #6

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by murat guler View Post
    present tense question sentences.

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****

    Who lives in that house? Mrs. Smith does.
    Who likes ice cream? Almost everyone does.

    Where is her son? At the university.

    What has four tires? An automobile does.
    What smells delicious? A chocolate cake does.

    Here are three shirts. Which [shirt] looks the most attractive?


    James
    Last edited by TheParser; 03-Aug-2014 at 14:23. Reason: I changed a question mark to a period (full stop).

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    #7

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Ok thanks. What about these versions, are they correct?

    Who DOES live in that house? Mrs. Smith does.
    Who DOES like ice cream? Almost everyone does.

    What DOES have four tires? An automobile does.
    What DOES smell delicious? A chocolate cake does.

    Which DOES look the most attractive?

    By the way, all the answers to such questions do not have to be 3rd person singular, it can also be plural. So why do we have to put "s" to the verbs of subject questions in simple present tense. Why do "who-which-what" always treated as singular in subject questions in this tense?

    A: Who helps you when you need help?
    B: My friends

    I know all languages have their own structure-logic but the logic of my native language makes me think that this structure is weird.

  5. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Yes, "who/what" etc are treated as singular. It doesn't matter what the likely answer might be.

    Who lives in that house? My parents live there.
    Who has a pencil? We do/We have a pencil/We have pencils.
    What has four legs and black and white stripes? A zebra.

    All your questions starting "Who does ..." and "What does ..." are grammatical but very unnatural. As an initial standard question, a native speaker would not say "What does smell delicious?" They would say "What smells delicious?"
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 04-Aug-2014 at 00:24.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  6. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Your sentences with "does" would usually only occur after a previous suggestion has been refuted.

    Mrs. Jones lives in that house.
    No she doesn't.
    Who does live in that house?
    Mrs. Smith does.

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    #10

    Re: Adding "s" To Verb In Simple Present Tense Question Sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by murat guler
    Why do "who-which-what" always treated as singular in subject questions in this tense?

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Murat Guler:

    I want to congratulate you on an excellent question. As you know, some moderators and teachers have already given you the answers.

    *****

    I only wanted to add a few comments (not "answers") to the conversation.

    1. Some native speakers do use a plural form after, for example, "Who" in certain circumstances.

    2. Here is what one reliable English usage book says:

    a. "In everyday speech we commonly use a singular verb ... even when we are asking for a plural answer: Who is coming tonight? John and Sally are."

    b. "However, plural verbs can occur nataurally after subject questions."

    i. He gives these examples:

    (a) Who are playing in the orchestra?
    (b) Who have won Nobel Prizes for literature in the past two years?

    *****

    In my opinion, there seems to be a difference between "Who helps you when you need help?" and "Who have won Nobel Prizes for literature?" In the second sentence, the speaker (and the listener) would naturally be thinking of more than one person.



    James


    Source: L.G. Alexander, Longman English Grammar (1988) published by Longman (London and New York).
    Last edited by TheParser; 04-Aug-2014 at 11:51. Reason: I had misspelled "listener."

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