Quick Lesson Options
This Regular Lesson is quite long, for easier reading you can go to the following Quick Lessons instead.
- Quick Lesson: Agreement of Subject and Verb 1
- Quick Lesson: Agreement of Subject and Verb 2
- Quick Lesson: Agreement of Subject and Verb 3
Regular Lesson Proper
Agreement of Subject and Verb
- A singular subject takes a singular verb.
- A plural subject takes a plural verb.
- A compound subject joined by and usually takes a plural verb.
- When the parts of a compound subject are joined by and but the subject is considered a single unit, it takes a singular verb.
- A verb agrees with the subject, and not the predicate noun.
- Singular subjects joined by or or nor take a singular verb.
- Plural subjects joined by or or nor take a plural verb.
- When a singular and plural subject are joined by or or nor, the verb agrees with the nearer subject.
- Words intervening between the subject and the verb should be disregarded in choosing the correct form of the verb.
- The number of the subject is not changed by the addition of phrases beginning with with, together with, as well as, besides, accompanied by, including.
- In sentences beginning with the expletive there, care must be taken to determine the subject, which follows the verb.
- Collective nouns, such as jury, committee, team, and herd, may be either singular or plural. If they are considered as a unit, a singular verb is used; if they are considered as individuals, a plural verb is used.
- Indefinite Pronouns
- Such indefinite pronouns as each, everyone, someone, nobody, either, and another take singular verbs.
- Such indefinite pronouns as both, several, many, and few take plural verbs.
- The indefinite pronouns some, all, and none are either singular or plural, according to their meaning.
- Nouns which are plural in form but singular in meaning usually take a singular verb.
- The title of a book, even though plural in form, takes a singular verb.