2O Rules of Subject Verb Agreement

Subject-verb agreement is one of the essential grammar rules that every writer must follow. The subject and verb in a sentence must agree in terms of number, i.e., singular or plural. Failure to follow this rule can lead to confusion and miscommunication. It can also negatively impact your content`s search engine optimization (SEO) performance. In this article, we will discuss 20 rules of subject-verb agreement that every writer should know.

1. Singular subjects take singular verbs, and plural subjects take plural verbs.

Example: The cat eats fish. (Singular subject and verb)

The cats eat fish. (Plural subject and verb)

2. Compound subjects joined by «and» are plural and require plural verbs.

Example: John and Jane are going to the party.

3. Compound subjects joined by «or» or «nor» require singular verbs if none of the subjects are plural.

Example: Neither John nor Jane likes dancing.

4. Compound subjects joined by «or» or «nor» require plural verbs if any of the subjects are plural.

Example: Neither the dogs nor the cat likes vegetables.

5. Indefinite pronouns like «everyone,» «someone,» «anyone,» «nobody,» etc., are singular and require singular verbs.

Example: Everyone is going to the conference.

6. Collective nouns like «team,» «group,» «jury,» etc., can be either singular or plural, depending on the context.

Example: The team is practicing. (Singular)

The team are arguing among themselves. (Plural)

7. Titles or names of books, films, or other publications are singular.

Example: The Godfather is a classic movie.

8. Fractions and percentages take a singular verb when they refer to a single unit and a plural verb when they refer to multiple units.

Example: Two-thirds of the class are absent. (Multiple units)

One-third of the cake is missing. (Single unit)

9. Words like «each,» «every,» and «either» take singular verbs.

Example: Each employee receives a bonus.

10. Subjects and verbs separated by a phrase or clause must agree.

Example: The car, along with its passengers, was found.

11. Subjects connected by «and» but referring to the same thing should be treated as singular.

Example: Macaroni and cheese is my favorite food.

12. When the subject contains a plural noun, but the noun is not the subject, the verb should be singular.

Example: The group of students is studying for the exam.

13. Titles and names that contain «and» take plural verbs.

Example: Fred and Ginger are my favorite dance partners.

14. The pronouns «anybody,» «everybody,» «nothing,» «someone,» etc., take a singular verb.

Example: Nothing is impossible.

15. Subjects connected by «or» or «nor» take the verb that agrees with the one closest to it.

Example: Neither the mountain nor the valley is safe.

16. When using «either…or,» «neither…nor,» «not only…but also,» the verb agrees with the noun closest to it.

Example: Neither the team nor the coach is satisfied.

17. Subjects that come after the verb should agree with it.

Example: There are three apples left. (Not «There is three apples left.»)

18. When «one» is used as a pronoun, it takes a singular verb.

Example: One should always be kind to others.

19. Inverted sentences, where the verb comes before the subject, the verb should agree with the subject.

Example: Down the street runs a herd of sheep.

20. When using «there is» or «there are,» the verb should agree with the noun that follows it.

Example: There are three dogs in the park.

In conclusion, subject-verb agreement is crucial in writing clear and effective sentences. By following these 20 rules, you can ensure that your writing is grammatically correct and communicates your message accurately. Following these rules will also help your content rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) and improve your SEO performance.

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