Jan 25, 2015

The Nut Job: A Number of x The Number of

A number of should be used with a plural verb. Think of it this way: 
A number of equates to the word they.

A number of fans buy tickets at the game. (They buy tickets.) 
A number of dogs in our neighborhood actually like the mailman. (They like the mailmam.)

On the other hand, when using the number of, use a singular verbThe number of equates to the word it.

The number of snowstorms this year was more than expected. (It was more than expected.)

The number of dogs in our neighborhood has grown over the past several years. (It has grown.)

I.              Watch the movie segment and choose the best answer:

1. The number of cars on the streets WAS / WERE small.

2. A number of money bags WAS / WERE  inside the armored van.

3. A / THE number of nuts the vendor put in her the little girl's mouth was enough to keep her quiet.

4. A / THE  number of pictures were drawn to review the plan.

5. The number of nuts in the nut cart IS / ARE enough to feed everyone.

6. A / THE  number of squirrels have planned to assault the nut cart.

Answer Key:

1. was
2. were
3. the
4. a
5. is
6. a


Unknown said...

I need a movie segment with indefinite pronouns(somebody, anybody, someone etc) and go + action verb.
I love your blog!!!!!!!!!! It helps me a lot.

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks for the suggestion. It is on my list already.