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    #1

    can anyone tell me?

    hi all,

    I have grammar questions..can anyone help me?

    1. They want to be a pilot.
    2. They want to be pilots.
    3. John and Tina want to be a pilot.
    4. John and Tina wants to be a pilot.
    5. John and Tina want to be pilots.
    6. John and Tina wants to be pilots.

    It seems that the last one is wrong..anyway, can anyone tell me which of the above sentence(s) is(are) correct? Thanks.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: can anyone tell me?

    Quote Originally Posted by littlebaby View Post
    hi all,
    I have grammar questions..can anyone help me?
    1. They want to be a pilot. - OK if you say 'They each...'
    2. They want to be pilots. (Similarly, you could say 'They both...'.)
    3. John and Tina want to be a pilot. OK if you add 'each' again.
    4. John and Tina wants to be a pilot.
    5. [Both] John and Tina want to be pilots.
    6. John and Tina wants to be pilots.
    It seems that the last one is wrong..anyway, can anyone tell me which of the above sentence(s) is(are) correct? Thanks.
    Generally, the verb must agree with its subject, and 'both'/'each' helps clarify whether the two are a plurality with one shared ambition or a pair of singular agents with separate ambitions.

    b

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    #3

    Re: can anyone tell me?

    Thank you very much Bobk!

    But I have more questions, refer to no. 3,
    should I say:
    1. John and Tina each want to be a pilot.
    2. John and Tina each wants to be a pilot.
    I guess no.1 is correct right?

    And also,
    can I say
    1. Each of them want to be a pilot.
    2. Each of them wants to be a pilot.
    which of the above sentence is grammatically correct?

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: can anyone tell me?

    Michael Swan (169/1) says a singular verb is correct. I agree, though I have met the plural. Also, the position affects what's right:

    Each of them wants what's best for the children.

    but

    They each want what's best for the children.

    b

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