Collective Nouns Subject Verb Agreement Quiz

We understand why certain words can rub our nerves or ears when they are different from what we have learned and used over the years. The Chicago Manual of Style advises: „A mass noun (sometimes called a non-count noun) is someone who designates something incalculable, either because it is abstract {cowardice} {proofs} or because it refers to an indefinite set of people or things {the Faculty} {the bourgeoisie}; the latter type is also called a collective name. As the subject of a sentence, a mass noun normally takes a singular verb {the dispute is variable]. But in a collective sense, it can take either a singular form or a plural form {the ruling majority is unlikely to share power} {the majority are non-members). A singular verb emphasizes the group; A plural group highlights the different members. Approval or rejection of a grammatical rule does not change anything. The rule of the subverbation agreement with respect to collective names is what it is——— whether it is „respectfully contradicted“ or not. Test yourself or download the PDFs quiz and print them for later. In the link you indicated, Rule 19 is for the titles of books, movies and novels. This rule says that the entire title is singular, not just the subject of a sentence. In the example, The Burbs is a unique title of a movie. I know I shouldn`t be disturbed, but it drives me crazy to hear collective names associated with plural obstructions.

When I read Wikipedia, I see where „Led Zeppelin was an English rock band…“ It looks wrong. The fact that the group was British should not require that British rules in English apply. I would never say, „Coca-Cola is working on a new formula.“ The Coca-Cola Company is a collective noun and it is therefore appropriate to use a singular verb as in „Coca-Cola IS WORKING on a new formula“. How can we better determine when to use plural verbage with our collective nouns and when to use singular verbage? Nouns that designate a unit accept singular verbs and pronouns: class, committee, quantity, family, group, herd, jury, orchestra, team. Some examples of application: the Committee meets to set its agenda. . . .

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