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The singular and the plural, difinite/indifinite article These things confuse me. How can I know when I can use any English word(especially uncountable nouns) in the singular or the plural? For example, I don't know when I can use simplicity or simplicities. I'd like to know what's the difference between labor difficulties and labor difficulty. Why isn't 'the fish' 'fishes' or 'the fishes' in 'So long thanks for all the fish'?
2008년 2월 26일 오후 2:20
Answers · 1
Hi You say that these nouns are 'uncountable', but this is not so. You use the word simplicity when referring to a single simplicity and simplicities is used for two or more simplicities, the same with difficulty and difficulties - they are simply singular and plural nouns. For example 'the difficulty I have with English is the spelling' or 'the difficulties I have with English are the syntax and the spelling' (more than one difficulty) The fish question is one of those strange anomolies that appear in the English language to confuse us! These are some exceptions to the normal rule one fish, two fish one sheep, two sheep one deer, two deer one goose, two geese .... and yet ... one mongoose, two mongooses one mouse, two mice one cactus, two cacti one hippopotamus, two hippoptami ... and yet ... one duck billed platypus, two duck billed platypuses Katy
2008년 2월 26일
Language Skills
English, Japanese, Korean
Learning Language
English, Japanese