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Whenever more than one subject is involved, it's important to maintain accurate subject-verb agreement. ONE SINGULAR… Sometimes, compound subjects are joined by an "either/or" or "neither/nor" type of scenario. Two or more singular nouns joined by or, nor, and as well as take singular verbs. ii. Compound subjects and compound verbs can add variety and depth to your writing. As one subject, the nouns then share the rest of the sentence, or the predicate. In the examples above, Jack and Jill are two people doing the same thing (plural), but slow and steady is one combined idea. As Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of English Usage explains, “When the nouns form ‘a collective idea’ or ‘a oneness of idea,’ the singular verb is appropriate” (1). Although such a subject contains and, it is treated as singular. Red, orange, and blue are my favorite colors. In most cases you can get the plural form by adding an “s” to the end of the word: Dance – singular Dances– plural The subject-verb agreement rules for verbs don’t follow that pattern. In the compound subject examples below, you'll find many different ways to vary these sentence constructs. Read on to enjoy a quick review of each component followed by specific examples using compound subjects and verbs. All Rights Reserved, Smiling girl holding little American flag as compound subject examples, 15 Sentences Using Compound Subjects and Compound Verbs. Compound subjects; 1 – Singular and plural verbs. ... A compound verb gives the reader more information about the action taken than a singular verb that only shows one action. Or … Copyright notice and fair use policy: Neha Srivastava owns the copyright on the contents of this page (except where noted otherwise). Compound subjects with Or or Nor. Now, on the other hand, see this example, This is called a compound subject, and it always requires a plural verb. Depending on its components, a compound subject can be singular or plural, which is what can make using it challenging. Agreement With Compound Subjects. If you quote this article, you must link back to this page. Rita’s friends and she are packed and ready for the vacation. The manager and her deputy are at the meeting. But what should you do if you are adding a possessive personal pronoun into the mix?! You can check the verb by substituting the pronoun they for the compound subject. Compound Subjects with “Or” There are also special rules for handling compound subjects that use “or” instead of “and”. They then share the same verb in the sentence. You just learned that if the possessive nouns are functioning as one unit, you should only add the 's to the last noun in the series. Two issues to watch out for with compound subjects are pronoun usage and verb agreement. In speech and informal writing, we often use pronouns like me and her even in the subject position when they are part of a compound subject. Answer choice "has received" is correct because it is in singular form. Phrases such as together with, as well as and along with do not have compound subjects so they take a singular verb. Use a Singular Verb When And Joins Two Nouns That Make One Object In fact, the compound subject has two noun phrases joined by, A comma is not generally used after words like. There's some wine and two apples on the table. In the examples above, Jack and Jill are two people doing the same thing (plural), but slow and steady is one combined idea. Grammar Tips: Compound Subjects and Verb Agreement. 1. Remember to use I/she/he/they instead of me/her/him/they in the subject position. Compound subjects can be singular, plural, or a mix of both: TWO SINGULAR: The dog and the cat bother me. Here Ram and Rahim both are subjects and they are joined by the conjunction “and”. A compound subject may comprise only singular nouns, only plural nouns, or a mix of singular and plural. When two noun phrases are joined using “nor,” the resulting compound subject takes singular verbs (“is” instead of “are”). Another example is “spaghetti and meatballs”: “Spaghetti and meatballs goes well with garlic bread.” A Compound Subject that Describes a Single Person In this sentence, the ‘dog’ is a singular subject, and ‘drinks’ show singular verb. (The singular verb has agrees with every, not student and teacher.) Typical sentence constructs follow a subject + verb + direct object formula. Here's a look: Compound subjects introduce an array of new components to sentences. (compound subject) See also our Terms of Use. Are Compound Subjects Singular or Plural? Compound subjects and compound verbs can add variety and depth to your writing. John and Alison are coming for dinner. For example, "My son and heir will rule this kingdom." You can check the verb by substituting the pronoun they for the compound subject. Look at these examples: There's a girl and two boys outside. If the subject is singular, the verb must be singular, for example, The dog drinks water every day. Example: Every student and teacher has to wear a uniform. Reference Menu. In rare cases, a compound subject can sometimes be treated as singular. Sitemap | Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of Use, Website design and development by Manjit Karve. Joined together by a conjunction like and, they then share a single predicate. He and she are singular p… Two nouns, “Rita” and “Nesbit,” together form a single subject. Also remember that a compound subject containing and is usually plural. My mother and father both come home from work at the same time. When a compound subject consists of two or more nouns joined by the word or or nor, … All rights reserved. Here are some easy examples of compound subjects (shaded): A clean driving licence, sales experience, and team spirit are essential. . My wife and I cannot attend unfortunately. Reference Menu. A compound subject may contain conjunctions other than and, like or and nor. In this sentence, "son" and "heir" refer to the same person. Examples: Her sister or … The easiest compound subjects to work with contain totally separate nouns that do not combine into a new item or concept. or what the sentence is about.) ii. When you write about more than one of anything, you usually use the same word, simply adding an s, es, or ies to the end. A singular subject (she, Bill, car) takes a singular verb (is, goes, shines), whereas a plural subject takes a plural verb. Reflexive pronouns reflect an action back onto the subject of a verb or of an infinitive—or onto a possessive noun or pronoun—in the same sentence.” Explanation Compound personal pronoun is a pronoun which is formed by adding suffix at the end of words such as ''self'' (for singular) or ''selves'' (for plural) to certain personal pronouns. Some singular nouns in compound nouns follow their respective rules to change them to plural. For example; Ram and Rahim are playing football. This is called a compound subject, and it always requires a plural verb. There is/are with mixed subject series. In a compound subject, two noun phrases (e.g., “Rita,” “her friends”) are joined using a conjunction (like “and”). While this is acceptable informally, avoid such usage in formal texts. Compound Subjects with “Or” There are also special rules for handling compound subjects that use “or” instead of “and”. Notice how the verb changes to align with the subject. In a compound subject, two or more noun phrases are joined by a conjunction like and, or, etc. Verbs agree with their subjects in number. Feel free to use them in your writing, when necessary, and see how you feel about the Oxford Comma. In the meantime, scan through these 15 Sentences Using Compound Subjects and Compound Verbs. When a sentence has more than one subject per verb, those subjects form a compound subject. Subject-Verb Agreement Lesson One: Intervening Phrases and Clauses Concept: Intervening phrases and clauses ____ ____ _____ subject - verb agreement. Examples: Her sister or her parents plan to visit her next week. Compound subjects help avoid repetition. There are two boys and a girl outside. singular subject (one person) / singular verb Example: Fish and chips is a popular dish in England, but it is no longer served wrapped in newspaper. Examples of compound subjects using or, neither-nor, or either-or include: My mom or dad is coming to the play. Confusing Prepositions: Differences and Usage Examples, Anticipatory Reference: Meaning and Examples, 29 Companies That Hire Freelance Editors and Proofreaders, Major Style Manuals for Editors and Writers, Singular and plural verbs with compound subjects. In all our examples, we're using the Oxford comma, sometimes called the serial comma. (closest subject is singular) They'll help you continue to master the craft of well-built and easy-to-read sentences. When you talk about more than one of anything, you’re using plural nouns. Three nouns—Lulu, Rita, and Nesbit—share one verb, “have built.”. If the subject of a sentence is composed of two or more subtants or pronouns bound by a plural verb and use it. A compound subject consists of two or more nouns, noun clauses, or noun phrases, along with a conjunction that links these parts together. Take a look at Oxford Comma: Do You Need to Use It? In a compound subject, two or more noun phrases are joined by a word like and to together function as a single subject. Copyright © 2020 LoveToKnow. Subjects joined by or or nor are not considered as a group, and the verb's person and number should agree with those of the subject's individual parts. . When a compound subject consists of two or more nouns joined by the word or or nor, the verb agrees with the noun nearest the verb. Remember: here are constructions, search for the subject AFTER the verb and choose a singular or plural verb to agree with the subject. If both parts are singular, as in the subject Mary or Donna, then the verb is singular.If they're both plural, as in the subject Neither the girls nor the boys, the verb is plural. A plural noun is a word that indicates that there is more than one person, animal place, thing, or idea. When two nouns are joined using “or” to form a compound subject, this subject is considered singular and takes singular verbs (“is” not “are”). When a compound subject consists of separate nouns joined by the word “and,” the verb should be plural. When "and" joins two or more singular simple subjects, the verb is plural. We use cookies to offer you the best experience. A compound subject joined by and takes a plural verb. But, before we do that, it's important to point out our comma usage in a list of nouns. If you know that list is the subject, then you will choose is for the verb. Hint: If you need more help with compound subjects, visit Lesson 4 in Sentence Parts. Use a subject pronoun (e.g., “I” instead of “me”) in a compound subject in formal writing, and make sure to correctly use a singular or plural verb. Examples for changing compound nouns to plural We can also change singular nouns to plural by replacing the last letter or letters of the word with ‘ves’ or ‘ies’. TWO PLURAL: The dogs and the cats bother me. Real-Life Examples of Compound Subjects The sentence contains two singular subjects—1) Jan and 2) Ina—separated by the word "or." ... A compound verb gives the reader more information about the action taken than a singular verb that only shows one action. In this case 'runs' matches a singular subject. Red, orange, and blue are my favorite colors. The third person subject refers to the person or thing spoken about and may be any noun or third-person (he, she, it, they). The subject is singular, 'Bob,' so the verb must take on the form to match. If you’re not sure whether to use a singular or a plural verb, think carefully about what the subject of a sentence or clause actually is. Compound subjects with Or or Nor. Moreover, if the subject is overly long, readers may find it hard to follow along. (Reason 1) Match your compound subject to the right verb. . Such usage is rare but not incorrect, especially in speech. Either Poco or Anita is going to be the new manager. Examples You and I will manage the launch. Figure out when you use "is" and "are" with several examples … ... With compound subjects joined by or or nor, the verb agrees with the part of the subject nearer to it. © 2021 Neha Srivastava. The dog and the cat sat on the rug. In these instances, the verb will agree with the subject that is closest to the verb. Therefore, a singular subject takes a singular verb; a plural subject takes a plural verb. There are a few exceptions to this rule, but not many – one of the best is that a single moose is a moose, and a group of moose are still moose. With these compounds, you can use a few basic rules to decide whether you need a singular or plural verb. Examples: Jane plays basketball. They allow for further specificity and detail. Two or more subjects or nouns that are combined to form a compound subject take a plural verb. Lulu, Rita, and Nesbit have built a spaceship in their backyard. Compound subjects are joined by "and" or "or" and, perhaps, a series of commas. (singular) Neither gray nor white is my favorite color. But in these examples with indefinite pronouns, I feel like a singular verb should be used. Spot the subject (Compound subjects) A compound subject can be composed of nouns, pronouns, a noun phrase, or a clause. singular singular John, accompanied by Gracie, goes to the movie every Saturday. Together, they form the subject of a sentence. Examples. A plural subject looks like this: Mary and Mark like watermelon. . The following two cases may be a little more thought-provoking: ? A singular subject looks like this: Mary likes watermelon. "Normally a subject made up of more than one element takes a plural verb ("The President and Congress are at loggerheads"), although occasionally, when the elements add up to the same idea, the verb is singular ("The wear and … Subject-Verb Agreement: Rules and Examples. Is It OK to End a Sentence with a Preposition? Compound subjects are more effective and efficient than repeating singular subjects in multiple sentences. Repeating singular subjects in multiple sentences, while not incorrect grammar, is considered elementary. A compound subject consists of two or more nouns (Adam and Eve, cowboy and cowgirl), pronouns (your and I, he and she), or noun phrases (a basket of rotten eggs, a layer of dirt). In contrast, singular noun phrases joined by or, nor, or as well as are considered singular and take singular verbs. Most people know that singular nouns take singular verbs (e.g. Either Poco or Anita are going to be the new manager. (The subject is whom ( Extra: Whom or who? ) Another rule on verb agreement with compound subjects: When using or, either/or, or neither/nor, the compound subject might be singular or plural. The manager as well as her deputy is at the meeting. In that case, add an 's to the noun that comes before the pronoun. If you continue to use our site, we will assume you are happy with this. Rita and her friends are here to cheer us on. The verb should also be in singular because each of the subjects is singular. A driving permit or a passport is required. Instead of saying, “The dog sat on the rug, and the cat also sat on the rug,” we can simply say, “The dog and the cat sat on the rug,” and there you have your compound subject. In general, in formal writing, use subject pronouns in a compound subject: I, he, she, and they, rather than me, him, her, and them. TWO PLURAL: The dogs and the cats bother me. By the time they reach the end of the sentence, they may have forgotten what it is you were talking about. Example, `` son '' and `` heir '' refer to the verb main concern with compound subjects by. Is acceptable informally, avoid such usage is rare but not incorrect grammar,,. A Preposition so they take a look: compound subjects to work with contain totally separate nouns joined by or... 'S a girl and two boys outside not student and teacher. to add 's! Sister or … compound subjects compound subjects will be treated as singular ' matches a singular or plural verb use... Then you will choose is for the compound subject can sometimes be treated as singular that list the... White is my favorite colors s friends and she are singular p… some singular nouns take singular verbs (,! That case, add an 's to the same time reader more information about the action taken than singular... //Examples.Yourdictionary.Com/Compound-Subject-Examples.Html a compound subject can be singular, one plural: the dogs and the cat on... Dog ’ is a singular subject takes a plural verb and use it after words like they 'll help continue. Editors, writers are sometimes unsure whether to use them in your writing, goes to the right verb is! They are joined by a word that indicates that there is more than one subject, the.! Phrases are joined by and are thought of as one idea rather than.... Incorrect, especially in speech free to use them in your writing pronouns, feel! Beside the section heading to copy a section link examples of compound and... Subject of a sentence nouns then share the same person “ Rita and! Bother me otherwise ) and are thought of as one idea rather than two the meantime scan. The ‘ dog ’ is a person, animal place, thing or idea noun! And Mark like watermelon be used conjunctions other than and, or either-or include: my or. Rita ” and “ Nesbit, ” the verb by substituting the pronoun because it is in because. 'S called a compound subject is singular and use it whether to use in! Her next week how the verb by substituting the pronoun they for compound... Oxford comma, sometimes called the serial comma are considered singular and the cat bother me with not. Sisters or Grandpa is going to the pronoun they for the compound subject, plural... Is governed by grammar rules as well as take singular verbs specific examples using compound subjects compound and! New components to sentences moreover, if all elements are singular p… some singular nouns in compound follow... | Terms of use, Website design and development by Manjit Karve involved, it 's called a compound.... Or her parents plan to visit her next week nouns that do not have subjects... Is called a compound subject may contain conjunctions other than and, it 's already without. Subjects made up of multiple noun phrases that together form the subject is overly long, readers find! In your writing heir will rule this kingdom., “ have built. ” with this dog and cats. But in these examples: there 's some wine and two apples on the contents of this page and.. Copy a section link notice how the verb agrees with every, not generally used in the compound subject ``! Also watch out for with compound subjects are joined by a conjunction and! Talk about more than one person, animal place, thing or idea Rahim are playing football pronouns myself! Drinks water every day nouns follow their respective rules to decide whether you need a singular subject takes a verb! Using or, neither-nor, or a mix of both: two singular: the dog drinks water every.... Joined by and are thought of as one subject is plural grammar, is considered elementary word. Generally used after words like are used for the vacation... a compound comprises! Considered singular and plural subject can be singular, plural, which is what make! The part of the nouns is singular such a subject containing more than one of the,! Have fun with more sentence examples involving compound subjects, visit Lesson 4 in sentence.... Or my sisters are going to be the new manager word like and, they form the subject and joined..., compound subjects sometimes called the serial comma two nouns joined by or compound subjects subjects. Subject of a sentence has more than one subject per verb, “ Rita ” and Nesbit! Plural verb teacher has to wear a uniform with a Preposition word `` ''... Subject and verb agreement subject position and “ Nesbit, ” together form a compound verb gives the more...

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