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Numbers in English Grammar

 

In terms of grammar, the number means the count of a noun or pronoun.

Object-objects, glass-glasses, man-men etc.
 

Types of numbers:

  • Singular
  • Plural

Singular Number:

Only one noun or a pronoun.

Example:

Laptop, switch, chair, cup, etc.

 

Plural Number:

More than one noun or pronoun.

Example:

Laptops, Switches, Chairs, Cups, etc.
 

Changing from Singular to Plural:

A number can be changed from singular to plural, there are some rules for that.

 

Rule 1:

The basic rule is to add an “s” at the end of a singular noun to make it plural.

 

SingularPlural
HatHats
RingRings
CarCars
BallBalls

 

Rule 2:

In case of an s, sh, ch, x or z, add “es”

SingularPlural
BushBushes
ClassClasses
BenchBenches
BoxBoxes
BuzzBuzzes

 

Rule 3:

In specific words “ch” is pronounced as k

 

SingularPlural
PatriarchPatriarchs
MatriarchMatriarchs
StomachStomachs
HierarchHierarchs
MonarchMonarchs

 

Part 1:

When there is a ‘y’ at the end following a Consonant so that “y” is substituted by “i”   and “es” is added to it.

SingularPlural
PastryPastries
BakeryBakeries
BodyBodies
FactoryFactories
CompanyCompanies

 

Part 2:

If that “y” is followed by a vowel, we can simply add an “s” at the end.

SingularPlural
EnjoyEnjoys
JourneyJourneys
KeyKeys
AllyAlleys
EssayEssays

 

Rule 4:

When the words end at “f” or “fe”, add “v” and “es” .

SingularPlural
LoafLoaves
SelfSelves
ShelfShelves
LifeLives
HalfHalves

 

Part 1:

Add “es” when a noun ends at a consonant followed by an “o”.

SingularPlural
VolcanoVolcanoes
TomatoTomatoes
EchoEchoes
TorpedoTorpedoes
MangoMangoes

 

Part 2:

In case of a vowel followed by “o”, simply add “s”.

SingularPlural
KangarooKangaroos
AudioAudios
PistachioPistachios
VideoVideos

 

Exceptions:

Some words might end at a consonant and “o”, we can simply add “s”.

SingularPlural
CommandoCommandos
GhettoGhettos
FrescoFrescos
LegoLegos
TuxedoTuxedos

 

For some, “s” and “es” both are correct.

SingularPlural
Buffalo Buffalos/Buffaloes
DominoDominos/Dominoes
VolcanoVolcanos/Volcanoes
MosquitoMosquitos/Mosquitoes

 

Rule 5:

In some nouns, we can change the vowel to make it plural.

SingularPlural
ManMen
ToothTeeth
GooseGeese
LouseLice
CactusCacti

 

Rule 6:

In some words, the addition of “en”, “ren” and “ne” is done.

SingularPlural
ChildChildren
HoseHosen
BrotherBrethren
Step-childStep-children

 

Part 1:

To change a compound noun (two nouns combining to form a word) to plural, if it contains the word “man” and it means a human being, it can be replaced by “men”.

SingularPlural
BatsmanBatsmen
WatchmanWatchmen
TalismanTalismen
PostmanPostmen

 

Part 2:

Incase “man” is just the part of that word, simply add an “s” .

SingularPlural
HumanHumans
BrahmanBrahmans

 

Rule 7:

When the noun ends at “ful” , an “s” should be added.

SingularPlural
HarmfulHarmfuls
SpoonfulSpoonfuls

 

Part 1:

Join “s” to the main part of a compound noun, if that noun contains several words.

Example:

SingularPlural
Sister-in-lawSisters-in-law
Security-inchargeSecurity-incharges

 

Rule 8:

Adding just an “s” at the end of some compound nouns does the job.

SingularPlural
Wood shelfWood shelves
Phone-casePhone-cases

 

Rule 9:

Some singular words have no plural:

  • Jewelry
  • Furniture

 

Similarly, some words are used in the plural sense only.

  • Shoes
  • Scissors

 

Rule 10:

At times some nouns seem to be singular but they are referring to more than one things or people.

Pupil.

Government.

 

Rule 11:

In the same way, some nouns sound like they are plural though they are not.

  • Wages
  • Ethics

 

Rule 12:

Some nouns have the same plural and singular.

For numbers, letters and characters, an apostrophe and “s” needs to be added.

  • Sheep
  • Canon

 

Rule 13:

For pronouns there is no specific rule, there are some words we need to keep in mind for that.

 

 

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