English Grammar for Beginners:
Intermediate English Grammar:
English Grammar Step by Step:
• Unit 6: Be, used to, would, be/get/become used to, dare, have, get, become, grow, go, turn, fall and feel
• Unit 14: A, an, some, any, no, not, none, each, every and the; compounds of some, any, no and every
English Grammar Step by Step
SINGULAR AND PLURAL NOUNS
Change the singular words given in the exercises below into plural.
After -ch, -sh, -s, -ss, -x, -z
, we add -es
(vowel + y
(consonant + y→i + es
often change to -ves
when making the plural. However, the following words do not undergo any change:
At times, both combinations are possible, though:
dwarf→dwarfs or dwarves
handkerchief→handkerchiefs or handkerchieves
hoof→hoofs or hooves
scarf→scarfs or sacarves
turf→turfs or turves
wharf→wharfs or wharves
("kilo" is an abbreviation for "kilogramme".)
(The origin of this word is Italian, that is, foreign. "Concerti" is also possible, but less usual.)
is preceded by a vowel.)
ending makes the plural by adding -es
. Yet, it only takes an -s
with abbreviations and words whose origin is foreign
: bistro, casino, canto, curio, concerto, dynamo, hello
(also hallo or hullo
), hippo, inferno, kilo, kimono, photo, piano, pro, rhino, solo, soprano, torso
. Sometimes, both combinations are possible: banjo→banjos/banjoes; cargo→cargos/cargoes; commando→ commandos/commandoes; dodo→dodos/dodoes; fiasco→fiascos/fiascoes; flamingo→flamingos/flamingoes; ghetto→ghettos/ghettoes; innuendo→innuendos/innuendoes; halo→halos/haloes; lasso→lassos/lassoes; mango→mangos/mangoes; motto→mottos/mottoes; placebo→placebos/placeboes; tornado→tornados/tornadoes; veto→vetos/vetoes; volcano→volcanos/volcanoes
. We add only one -s
to the singular noun if the o
is preceded by another vowel: kangaroo→kangaroos
"Skull" has a different ending from those given in the sections above, so we form the plural with an -s
6 Revision exercise.
Words of Greek origin ending in -is
, form the plural by changing the -i-
, as in the above example. Nevertheless, there are a few exceptions: chrysalis→chrysalises, chrysalides; iris→irises; metropolis→metropolises
. Axis→axes, pelvis→pelvises, penis→penises (or penes)
come from Latin.
(The Latin language took it from Greek.)
Some Latin-origin substantives ending in -ex
have two plural forms: one regular and one irregular, as seen above. Occasionally, we might have a variation in meaning. For example, appendix
can refer to a book (appendices
) and to a body (appendixes, appendices
). The noun "mix" is not regarded as foreign by speakers of English; therefore, only the regular plural form is possible: mixes
9 Revision exercise.
(types of fish)
Inuit→Inuits/Inuit (or Innuit→Innuits/Innuit)
rhinoceros→rhinoceroses/rhinoceros (also rhino→rhinos/rhino)
12 Revision exercise.
is possible as well, especially in American English.
Note that the consonant is doubled too.
Notice the following: chilli→chillies
Although "potato" is taken from the Castilian word "patata" —a blend from the Taino forms "pa
pa" and "batata
"—, it should be considered as an English one, because it has wholly adapted to the language.
Compounds generally make plural the last element. All the same, if we have an adjective in the second element, only the first element is made plural: court-martial→courts-martial
Phrasal verbs may become nouns. In this case, we add an -s
to the end (break-up→break-ups, lay-by→lay-bys, turn-off→turn-offs, shake-out→shake-outs
She broke up with him.
Their break-up caused him a lot of pain.
However, exceptions can occur: passer-by→passers-by
. Note too sister-in-law→sisters-in-law
is also possible in informal British English.
When the words man
are in the compound, both nouns take the plural form: woman priest→women priests
. If they are written as one word, and man
come first in the compound, they usually behave as ordinary nouns: manservant→manservants
), manhunt→manhunts, manhour→manhours;
but statesman→ statesmen, sportswoman→sportswomen, handyman→handymen
The plural of this word is regular. This noun was taken from French. It originally comes from Latin.
It is a blend: teleprinter + exchange
. It has a regular plural.
In very formal contexts, "persons" is possible.
Words like buffalo, carp, crab
usually make the plural with an -s
, but no -s
is added when they are used in specialized contexts. For instance, a hunter would say I killed two buffalo yesterday,
but some Sunday trippers would say We saw a lot of buffaloes this morning
Author: Miquel Molina i Diez
Pages: 1, 2 and the key
You may like to receive a pdf file with all the units of this section to study offline. If so, we can send it to you by email for a contribution of 25 euros.
1 Negative and interrogative sentences (Page 2 and the key)
2 Short answers (Page 2 and the key)
3 Question tags (Page 2 and the key)
4 Questions and exclamations (Page 2 and the key)
5 So, neither, nor, either (the key)
6 Be, used to, would, be/get/become used to, dare, have, get, become, grow, go, turn, fall and feel (Page 2 and the key)
7 Verb tenses: forms (Page 2 and the key)
8 Irregular verbs
9 Verb tenses: uses (Page 2, Page 3, Page 4, Page 5 and the key)
10 Personal pronouns, possessives and reflexive pronouns (Page 2 and the key)
11 The genitive case (the key)
12 Singular and plural nouns (Page 2 and the key)
13 Gender (the key)
14 A, an, some, any, no, not, none, each, every and the; compounds of some, any, no and every (Page 2, Page 3 and the key)
15 Neither, not...either, none, not...any, both and all (the key)
16 A few, few, a lot, lots, a little, little, many, much, no and plenty (the key)
17 Enough, too, so and such (the key)
18 Comparative and superlative sentences (Page 2 and the key)
19 Adjective order (the key)
20 Relative clauses (Page 2 and the key)
21 Do and make (the key)
22 Modal verbs (Page 2, Page 3 and the key)
23 Infinitives, gerunds and present participles (Page 2 and the key)
24 Conditional sentences (Page 2 and the key)
25 Passive sentences (the key)
26 Reported speech (Page 2 and the key)
27 Purpose (the key)
28 Word order (the key)
29 Inversion (the key)
30 Connectors (Page 2 and the key)
31 Prepositions (Page 2, Page 3 and the key)
32 Phrasal verbs (the key)