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  1. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
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    #1

    is or are

    Hello, Teachers.

    Which word should be used in the following sentences, is or are?

    1. Is (or Are?) neither he nor they wholly right?

    2. Is (or Are?) the country's unique art forms or culture very poor?

    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia ^_^


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434
    #2

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Hello, Teachers.

    Which word should be used in the following sentences, is or are?

    1. Is (or Are?) neither he nor they wholly right? Answer= Neither he nor they are wholely right

    2. Is (or Are?) the country's unique art forms or culture very poor? Answer = The country's unique art forms and culture are very poor.

    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia ^_^
    .

  2. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 414
    #3

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    .
    Thank you, Anglika.

    Do you mean 1. are and 2. are?


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #4

    Re: is or are

    Yes

  3. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 414
    #5

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    Yes
    Do you mean I can determine the word, is or are, in the questions according to their answers?

    Would you please correct the following sentences for me?
    1 Not only the students but also the teacher is enjoying the film.
    2 Is not only the students but also the teacher enjoying the film?

    3 Neither the students nor the teacher knows anything about it.
    4 Does neither the students nor the teacher know anything about it?

    5 Either he or I am right.
    6 Am either he or I right?
    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia *^@^*

  4. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 414
    #6

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Do you mean I can determine the word, is or are, in the questions according to their answers?

    Would you please correct the following sentences for me?
    1 Not only the students but also the teacher is enjoying the film.
    2 Is not only the students but also the teacher enjoying the film?

    3 Neither the students nor the teacher knows anything about it.
    4 Does neither the students nor the teacher know anything about it?

    5 Either he or I am right.
    6 Am either he or I right?
    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia *^@^*
    Hello, Teachers.
    Is there anyting wrong in my post?

  5. Raymott's Avatar
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      • Australia
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      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 24,104
    #7

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Do you mean I can determine the word, is or are, in the questions according to their answers?

    Would you please correct the following sentences for me?
    1 Not only the students but also the teacher are enjoying the film. But you'd say "Both the students and the teacher are..."
    2 Is not only the students but also the teacher enjoying the film? This one is not good. People just wouldn't phrase it that way. But if you did, it would have to be "are", as above.
    "Is the teacher enjoying the film as the students are?"
    "Are the students enjoying the film as the teacher is?"

    3 Neither the students nor the teacher knows anything about it. This should be plural because of "the students".
    4 Does neither the students nor the teacher know anything about it? "Do neither ... " (as above)

    5 Either he or I am right. No. "Either he is right, or I am."
    6 Am either he or I right? "Are either he or I right?" (he is + I am = we are). "Are either of us right?", "Am I right, or is he?", "Is he right, or am I?" , "Which of us is right?";
    "Are neither of us right?" = "Are we both wrong?"


    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia *^@^*
    R.

  6. Soup's Avatar
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    English Teacher
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    • Join Date: Sep 2007
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    #8

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Would you please correct the following sentences for me?
    Not only the students but also the teacher is enjoying the film.

    Is not only the students but also the teacher enjoying the film?

    Does neither the students nor the teacher know anything about it?

    Am either he or I right?

  7. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 414
    #9

    Re: is or are

    Dear Teachers,

    Thank you very much for your help. :)

    But, very regretfully, I'm even more confused. :(

    While in the school, I was told sth called 'the princple of proximity'--my translation may be not very exact.

    That principle says that when there are two subjects combined by some words or phrases (such as 'or', 'either ...or', 'nor', 'neither...nor', 'not...but', and 'not only...but also'), the verb form (singular or plural) should be determined by the subject closer to the verb.

    Here are some examples:
    1. What he does or what he says does not concern me. ('what he says' is the decisive factor)
    2. Neither you nor I am wrong. ('I' is the decisive factor)
    3. Not you but your father is to blame. ('your father' is the decisive factor)
    4. Not only you but (also) he is wrong. ('he' is the decisive factor)

    I don't think this principle agrees with some of the explanation in 7# and 8#.
    Can you give me some further explanation or some other advice?

    Looking forward to your reply.

    Enydia o_O???
    Last edited by enydia; 20-Sep-2008 at 09:34.

  8. Soup's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: is or are

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    'the princple of proximity'

    I don't think this principle agrees with some of the explanation in [posts] 7# and 8#.
    Proximity is fine here; it's the syntax that's awkward:
    Not only the students but also the teacher is enjoying the film.
    Proximity is violated here:
    Is not only the students but also the teacher enjoying the film?

    Proximity is violated here:
    Does neither the students nor the teacher know anything about it?
    Proximity is violated here:
    Am either he or I right?

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