Plural

From Teflpedia

Plural is a grammatical number equal to 2 or more. In English, nouns that are not singular are plural. Mass nouns are not usually used in plural.

Plurals can be classified into two types; regular plurals, which are formed by inflecting the noun with the plural -s suffix, and irregular plurals which don't. The distinction between regular and irregular plurals is rather fuzzy.

Most plurals are countable plurals applied to countable nouns; a minority are uncountable plurals applied to uncountable nouns.


Heteronyms[edit]

  • axes /ˈæksɪz/ plural of axAmE/axeBrE; /ˈæksiːz/ plural of axis
  • bases /ˈbeɪsɪz/ plural of base; /ˈbeɪsiːz/ plural of basis

Mass nouns[edit]

Some nouns ending in -s are mass nouns: measles – a news item – mathematics - physics – politics

Uncountable plurals[edit]

A few words are used only in the plural. e.g. Clothes. These are uncountable, literally in the sense that we don't say "2 clothes, 3 clothes, 4 clothes", but do possess a grammatical number of "many" or "2". So are uncountable plurals.

Words usually used in the plural[edit]

Words referring to a pair of something are usually plural, e.g. trousers. But can sometimes be used in the singular, e.g. "a trouser leg".

References[edit]