Number

Tdol

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nicolas

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Dear All,

I chose "are".

:?:
Why do others choose "is"?
Could someone explain that for me? :wink:

The advanced area here is difficult for me :(

Have a nice day :D
 

Tdol

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'The number' is treated as a grammatically singular despite the plural noun coming after it. It is one of those tricky things that gets tested in advanced exams. ;-)
 
N

nicolas

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Dear tdol,

tdol said:
'The number' is treated as a grammatically singular despite the plural noun coming after it. It is one of those tricky things that gets tested in advanced exams. ;-)

Thanks!
I think you're right (of course :wink: ):D

There are five students and then it becomes eight.
so we use "is".

Thanks tdol ! :D
Today I learned one more thing :D
 

RonBee

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A think it's the marker the that makes the difference there. What do you think, Tdol?

:D
 

silversea

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dodgerfan2002 said:
the number = singular
a number = plural
yeah, the phrase a number of... means several or many (it depends). So it calls for a plural verb.
The number of, on the other hand, is treated as a noun phrase in which number is a noun. Hence, it needs a singular verb. ;-)
 

Latoof

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I am clever... I chose is because the number is singular and is did not refer to the noun students.;-)
 

Tdol

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Well spotted. ;-)
 
S

sheena55ro

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nicolas said:
Dear All,

I chose "are".

:?:
Why do others choose "is"?
Could someone explain that for me? :wink:

The advanced area here is difficult for me :(

Have a nice day :D

You should take into consideration "the number of...." ,not the "students"
so, you have "The number of... is...
 

LUPITA

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2004
I chose "is" of course because of "the number" as a singular reference, but can you explain why you can find for example these sentences:

"if anybody phones tell THEM to phone later"...

or what it worse for me

"the author describes themselves as a fool"

Both examples were taken from written English
 

Isra

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I also voted is, because the number is singular..:-D
 

hounddog55

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Hello nicolas,

The number of students IS rising.

This is because "of students" is a prepositional phrase. It's a prepositional phrase because "of" is a preposition and it is followed by a noun. "Students" is the noun, and it is the object of the preposition "of." The prepositional phrase "of students" is modifying "number." Therefore it is simply a modifyer, and "number" is really the subject. And "number" is singular...
 

pristtian

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A number of+ Plural noun + Plural Verb
The number of + Plural noun + Singular Verb
:cool: :cool: :cool:
 

bb_girl

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I chose "is" because the number is rising, not the students :D
So it's definitely is:-D
 

soutter

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The number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva IS (number is the subject because of the number) incredible.

A number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva SPEAK (the completion of the phrase a (indefinite article) number of is the subject: Portuguese and Italians) English well.

The number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva IS incredible.
A number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva SPEAK English well

With the number of, number represents not only a precise figure albeit unstated it is also both the grammatical subject and the formal theme.

With a number of, number does not represent a precise figure and therefore remains deliberately vague. Its completing noun after of becomes the theme and subject.

A number of might be seen as synonymous for some and therefore will always be followed by a plural noun and the verb must be plural.
 

soutter

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The number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva IS (number is the subject because of the number) incredible.

A number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva SPEAK (the completion of the phrase a (indefinite article) number of is the subject: Portuguese and Italians and this will always be plural because a number of is synonymous for some) English well.

The number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva IS incredible.
A number of Portuguese and Italians in Geneva SPEAK English well

With the number of, number represents not only a precise figure albeit unstated it is also both the grammatical subject and the formal theme.

With a number of, number does not represent a precise figure and therefore remains deliberately vague. Its completing noun after of becomes the theme and subject.



A number of might be seen as synonymous for some and therefore will always be followed by a plural noun and the verb must be plural.
 
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