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    #1

    Verb subject agreement in a two-clause sentence

    I would be grateful for advice on the following sentence:

    'It is not known how many escape attempts were made, but only a small percentage were successful.'

    A friend tells me that the word after 'percentage' should be 'was', but I think that 'were' is correct because 'escape attempts' is plural. I live in the UK so the rules here may be slightly different than the US, but to substitute 'was' for 'were' in this sentence seems really odd to me.

  1. Roman55's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Verb subject agreement in a two-clause sentence

    I am not a teacher.

    Welcome to the forum, Pedantric.

    You're right and your friend is wrong.

    'It is not known how many escape attempts were made, but only a small percentage [of them] were successful.'

    'It is not known how much money was stolen, but only a small percentage [of it] was recovered.'

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