Plural or single with compound objects

Suppose you want to say something like There are two crates, having three and one balls respectively. How to say this correctly? Is it ‘…one balls’ or ‘three balls and one ball’, or something else? Answer As with a comment under the question, I’m not sure about the overall construction of the sentence, but I … Read more

Irregular plurals. Leathermans or Leathermen?

Which plural do you use for a word that should have a regular plural but ends with a word that has its own irregular one? The example that made me ask was “leatherman” (the multitool) but there are plenty of others. Answer Short answer: it’s up to the company, but nobody cares what the company … Read more

“Change their positions” vs. “change their position” [duplicate]

This question already has answers here: Closed 9 years ago. Possible Duplicate: “Those who qualify will be awarded a certificate” or “those who qualify will be awarded certificates”? “On their back” or “on their backs”? Should the singular or plural of position should be used in the following sentences? Why Political Parties Change Their Positions: … Read more

Apostrophe and plurals of abbreviations [duplicate]

This question already has answers here: Closed 8 years ago. Possible Duplicate: What is the correct way to pluralize an acronym? I was in Middlesbrough yesterday and spotted: CJ’s Cafe So far, so good, I thought. A selection of the delights within were listed: Pizzas      Parmo’s      Breakfasts The second, on the face of it, looks like a … Read more

Lots of questions for a lot of clauses!

I am confused over the use of lots of vs lot of. I am phrasing a sentence having the following clause : [Article] [lot-of/lots-of] [noun singular/plural] [verb] … As an example : A lot of mail keeps arriving. Ignoring the structuring of the sentence for the moment, what are the rules for matching up the … Read more

Using the word “quota” in plural and singular

If I need to use the word “quota” in both the plural and the singular, what is the correct form? Is it “several quota” and “one quotum” or “several quotas” and “one quota”? Answer Merriam-Webster’s Eleventh Collegiate Dictionary (2003) confirms the derivation that appears in medica’s second comment above: quota n [ML, fr. L quota … Read more