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English Grammar : Subject verb Agreement – 1

Welcome to Online English in AffairsCloud.com. We are providing English Grammar Which is very Important in English Language, we are providing you subject – verb agreement rules , Which are very important for all Competitive Exams!!!

As we know that the subject and the verb are the essential parts of a sentence. It is imperative that the verb agree with the subject in number and person. So, here, we are providing you important rules of subject-verb agreement.

Rule 1: When two or more subjects are joined by- ‘as well as, like, unlike, besides, in additionto, with, together with, along with, rather than, no less than, except, nothing but’ then the verb is used according to the first subject.

Ex- a) The director as well as the dancers were honoured by the public. (Wrong)

The director as well as the dancers was honoured by the public. (Right)

b) My mother no less than my father is (Right)

c) Milk besides vegetables are good or health. (Wrong)

Milk besides vegetables is good or health. (Right)

Rule 2: When two or more subjects are connected by ‘not only-but also, neither-nor, either-or, none-but’ then the verb is used according to the nearest subject.

Ex- a) Neither the students nor their guide were found present in the common room. (Wrong)

Neither the students nor their guide was found present in the common room. (Right)

b) Not only yuvi but also his team-mates was involved in the match fixing. (Wrong)

Not only yuvi but also his team-mates wereinvolved in the match fixing. (Right)

Rule 3:Neither, either, none, anyone, each, every’ used as pronoun or adjective should be followed by third person singular verbs.

Ex- a) Neither of the two boys have done it. (Wrong)

Neither of the two boys has done it. (Right)

b) Each of the students are (Wrong)

Each of the students is obedient. (Right)

c) Either of us has done his work. (Right)

Exceptions of rule 3:

  • When none is used with countable nouns both singular and plural verbs are correct. But with uncountable noun singular verb is correct.

Ex- None of the boys has/have done homework. (Both are correct)

None of the work is completed. (Right)

  • When eachis used after subject the verb is plural.

Ex – We each have taken our bags. (Right)

Rule 4:The expression ‘many a/an, more than one’ should be followed by a singular noun and singular verb.

Ex- a) Many an accidentshave recently taken place. (Wrong)

Many an accidenthas recently taken place. (Right)

Note – In case of ‘many’, both verb and noun should be plural

Ex- Manyaccidentshave recently taken place. (Right)

  1. b) More than one man were (Wrong)

More than one man was absent. (Right) 

Rule 5: In a compound sentence both auxiliary verbs and principal verbs should be mentioned separately if they differ in number, form or voice. In such cases one verb cannot act for both the clauses.

Ex – a) She is intelligent but her sisters dull. (Wrong)

She is intelligent but her sistersare dull. (Right)

She is intelligent but her sister dull. (Right)

Rule 6:The verb is used in singular form when two singular nouns refer to the same person denoted by one article.

Ex – a) The Collector and District Magistrate are on a visit to the Tehsil today. (Wrong)

The Collector and District Magistrate is on a visit to the Tehsil today. (Right)

Rule 7:The verb is used in singular form in certain phrases or idiomatic pair of words suggesting the same meaning, though not synonyms.

Ex- a) Bread and butter are difficult to earn. (Wrong)

Bread and butter is difficult to earn (Right)

  1. b) Time and tide wait for none. (Wrong)

Time and tide waits for none. (Right)

Rule 8:When the sentence begins with ‘It’ the verb is according to the subject ‘It’.

Ex – It are the stars that guide our destiny. (Wrong)

It is the stars that guide our destiny. (Right)

English Grammar : Subject verb Agreement – 2