Chino Alpha
Carrots? Peas? I was told that the sentence below is incorrect: My favorite vegetable is peas. While I was also told this one is correct: My favorite vegetable is carrots. This makes me confused. It seems in some cases we can use the structure "My favorite category + to be + plural", while in some other cases we cannot. Are we supposed to treat this kind of sentence on a case-by-case basis? If that is the case, then how can I use this structure correctly? It would be such a hassle not having a general rule? Thank you.
Nov 27, 2016 9:49 AM
Answers · 12
The sentence 'My favourite vegetable is peas' is not - strictly speaking - incorrect. But it is VERY odd. The fact is that no native English speaker would say this because it is simply not a natural-sounding sentence. The mismatch between the singular verb 'is' and plural noun 'peas' sounds very wrong to the native-speaker ear. A much more natural phrasing is this: Peas are my favourite vegetable. Cats are my favourite pet. Similar constructions that also sound fine to us are the novel title 'Oranges are not the only fruit' and the song title 'Diamonds are a girl's best friend'. By contrast, 'A girl's best friend are diamonds' sounds very wrong indeed. Here's some advice - don't fret about sentences which simply aren't used in English, like 'My favourite vegetable is carrots'. Forget about them. Instead, concentrate on sentences which we do use, i.e. 'Carrots are my favourite vegetable'. Now, here's a question for you. Why are Chinese students so obsessed with this particular sentence? Every few weeks, a Chinese italki member comes up with the sentences 'My favourite fruit is apple' or 'Apples is my favourite fruit', insisting that they are correct or wanting to know why they're incorrect. Does this come from a textbook or course that you all follow, perhaps?
November 27, 2016
Both peas and carrots are countable nouns so they should receive the same grammatical rules. You will have to ask why the peas isn´t accepted and carrots is. I would have said that both answers are correct. The only difference is the possibility of only eating 1 (eating 1 carrot is normal, but only 1 pea.......) My favourite vegetable is carrot (OK) My favourite vegetable is pea (a bit strange) My favourite vegetable is carrots (OK) My favourite vegetable is peas (OK) My favourite vegetables are carrots (OK) My favourite vegetables are peas (OK)
November 27, 2016
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Chino Alpha
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, Japanese
Learning Language
English, Japanese