Subject/verb agreement is a crucial aspect of writing that cannot be overlooked. This refers to the way in which a subject and verb match in terms of number and person. In English grammar, the subject is the person, place, thing, or idea that the sentence is about, while the verb is the action or state of being that the subject performs. Thus, subject/verb agreement means that the verb chosen must agree with the number and person of the subject.
One area where subject/verb agreement can be tricky is after certain words that can be both singular and plural depending on context. These words include „each,“ „every,“ „neither,“ „either,“ „none,“ „some,“ and „many.“ Let us examine each of these words in turn and see how they affect subject/verb agreement.
1. Each/every: These words are always used with singular verbs, even if they are followed by a plural noun. For example, „Each of the students in the class is responsible for completing their homework.“
2. Neither/either: These words are also used with singular verbs because they refer to one thing at a time. For example, „Neither of the boys is interested in playing football.“
3. None: This word can be used as both a singular and plural noun, and its verb agreement depends on the context. If it refers to a singular noun, it takes a singular verb, while if it refers to a plural noun, it takes a plural verb. For example, „None of the water is left in the jug“ and „None of the students were paying attention in class.“
4. Some/many: These words can be followed by both singular and plural nouns, and their verb agreement depends on whether the noun is singular or plural. For example, „Some of the cake has been eaten“ and „Some of the apples are rotten.“
In conclusion, subject/verb agreement is an essential aspect of writing that should not be overlooked. After certain words like „each,“ „every,“ „neither,“ „either,“ „none,“ „some,“ and „many,“ it is essential to pay attention to the number of the noun that follows and choose the correct verb accordingly. This ensures that your writing is grammatically correct and easy to read and understand.