Much, many with a noun
We use much with singular uncountable nouns and many with plural nouns:
[talking about money]
I haven’t got much change. I’ve only got a ten euro note.
Are there many campsites near you?
Questions and negatives
We usually use much and many with questions (?) and negatives (−):
Is there much unemployment in that area?
How many eggs are in this cake?
Do you think many people will come?
It was pouring with rain but there wasn’t much wind.
There aren’t many women priests.
In affirmative clauses we sometimes use much and many in more formal styles:
There is much concern about drug addiction in the US.
He had heard many stories about Yanto and he knew he was trouble.
In informal styles, we prefer to use lots of or a lot of:
I went shopping and spent a lot of money.
Not: I went shopping and spent much money.
Lots, a lot, plenty
Much of, many of
When we use much or many before articles (a/an, the), demonstratives (this, that), possessives (my, your) or pronouns (him, them), we need to use of:
How much of this book is fact and how much is fiction?
Claude, the seventeenth-century French painter, spent much of his life in Italy.
Unfortunately, not many of the photographers were there.
How many of them can dance, sing and act?
This much, that much
When we are talking to someone face-to-face, we can use this much and that much with a hand gesture to indicate quantity:
[the speaker indicates a small amount with his fingers]
I only had that much cake.
A lot of, lots of with a noun
We use a lot of and lots of in informal styles. Lots of is more informal than a lot of. A lot of and lots of can both be used with plural countable nouns and with singular uncountable nouns for affirmatives, negatives, and questions:
We’ve got lots of things to do.
That’s a lot of money.
There weren’t a lot of choices.
Can you hurry up? I don’t have a lot of time.
Have you eaten lots of chocolate?