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  1. Boris Tatarenko's Avatar
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      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Russian Federation
      • Current Location:
      • Russian Federation

    • Join Date: May 2013
    • Posts: 1,099
    #1

    the average British and Russian family/families has/have

    I'm not sure which one is correct.

    The average British and Russian family/families has/have someting in common.

    I think the bold options are correct.
    What would you say?

    Thanks in advance.
    Please, correct all my mistakes. I should know English perfectly and if you show me my mistakes I will achieve my dream a little bit faster. A lot of thanks.

    Not a teacher nor a native speaker.

    • Member Info
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      • English
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      • England
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    #2

    Re: the average British and Russian family/families has/have

    I agree.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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      • British English
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      • UK
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      • UK

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    #3

    Re: the average British and Russian family/families has/have

    Interesting. I would use "The average British and Russian family has ...". I would assume that many families have been considered and one single average example of each has been found. Despite the fact that the sentence is talking about one English family and one Russian family (which I realise means it's talking about two families and therefore the plural could be argued), I find it much more natural to think of it as "An average British family, like an average Russian family, has ..."
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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      • Laos

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    #4

    Re: the average British and Russian family/families has/have

    I think both forms work.

  3. Roman55's Avatar
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      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
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      • France

    • Join Date: Feb 2014
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    #5

    Re: the average British and Russian family/families has/have

    I am not a teacher.

    I think the singular in something like 'The average British and Russian family has 2.4 children' is OK, but not in Boris's sentence.

    Here he's saying they have something in common (with each other). It sounds incomplete to say, 'The average British and Russian family has something in common.' With what?

  4. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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      • American English
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      • United States
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      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
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    #6

    Re: the average British and Russian family/families has/have

    The "what" may have come in a previous sentence or may come in a subsequent sentence. There is no rule that says all information must be contained in a single sentence.

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