Subject Agreement with Verb Rules

Subject-verb agreement is an essential grammatical rule that ensures that the verb in a sentence agrees with the subject in terms of number and person. In other words, the verb used in a sentence must match the number and person of the subject.

Subject-verb agreement may seem like a minor detail, but it can significantly impact the clarity and accuracy of a sentence. Incorrect subject-verb agreement can lead to confusing and ambiguous sentences, negatively impacting the readability and effectiveness of your content.

Here are some key subject-verb agreement rules to keep in mind when writing:

1. Singular subject needs a singular verb

When the subject of a sentence is singular, it requires a singular verb. For example, “The cat sleeps on the bed,” where “cat” is a singular subject, and “sleeps” is a singular verb.

2. Plural subject needs a plural verb

When the subject of a sentence is plural, it requires a plural verb. For example, “The cats sleep on the bed,” where “cats” is a plural subject, and “sleep” is a plural verb.

3. Indefinite pronouns require singular or plural verbs depending on context

Indefinite pronouns such as “anyone,” “someone,” and “everyone” require singular verbs. For example, “Everyone is happy.” Other indefinite pronouns such as “all,” “few,” and “some” can be either singular or plural, depending on the context of the sentence. For example, “All of the cats are sleeping” requires a plural verb.

4. Collective nouns can be singular or plural

A collective noun, which refers to a group of individuals, can be singular or plural, depending on whether the group is considered a single unit or a collection of individuals. For example, “The team is playing well” requires a singular verb because the team is considered a single unit. However, “The team are arguing among themselves” requires a plural verb, as the team is regarded as a group of individuals.

5. Compound subjects take a plural verb

Compound subjects, which consist of two or more individual subjects, require a plural verb. For example, “The cat and the dog are sleeping on the bed,” where “cat and dog” are the compound subject, and “are” is the plural verb.

In conclusion, subject-verb agreement is a fundamental grammatical rule that every writer should be familiar with. By following these rules, you can ensure that your writing is clear, concise, and easy to read. Remember, correct subject-verb agreement can make all the difference in the impact of your writing on your readers and search engines.