P5 Common Grammar Mistakes Series: ‘A number’ vs ‘The number’
Do you wonder why we sometimes use a singular verb for ‘number’ and sometimes a plural verb?
If you do wonder, this is the grammatical rule for ‘a number’ and ‘the number’.
The expression the number is followed by a singular verb while the expression a number is followed by a plural verb.
The number of people we need is 10. (The number = singular verb)
A number of people have written in about this subject. (A number = plural verb)
The number of people lined up for tickets was four hundred. (The number = singular verb)
A number of suggestions were made. (A number = plural verb)
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