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Elementary Grammar, Lesson 08. Number

To complete this lesson, complete the following tasks:

  1. Study the Lesson, carefully and completely.
  2. Complete all Memory Work.
  3. Complete the lesson Assessment

Lesson

Does the word “fan” denote one object, or more than one?

The word “fan” denotes but one object.

Does the word “fans” denote one object, or more than one?

The word “fans” denotes more than one object.

When a noun denotes but one object, it is said to be in the Singular Number.

When a noun denotes more than one object, it is said to be in the Plural Number.

The last sound in the word fan easily joins with the sound represented by the letter s, therefore, its plural is formed by adding -s to the singular. The plural of any noun ending with a sound that will easily join with the sound represented by s, is formed by adding -s to the singular.

dog, dogs              cat, cats             boy, boys

The plural of any word ending with a sound that will not easily join with the sound represented by s, is formed by adding -es to the singular, when the singular does not end with e; as church, makes church-es; mass makes mass-es. Here are more examples:

box, boxes             dish, dishes             glass, glasses             branch, branches

These are two ways of forming plurals. There are many other ways.

Nouns ending in -f or -fe usually change these endings to -ves;

knife, knives             loaf, loaves             leaf, leaves

Nouns ending in -y, with a consonant before it, change y to i and add -es.

baby, babies             candy, candies             party, parties

A few nouns are alike in both numbers; as sheep, deer, trout, vermin.

Letters, figures, marks, and signs add ‘s; as b’s, 6’s, *’s, 3’s.

Remember, these are only a few common ways of forming plurals.  You can use these rules as a guide,

Memory Work

  1. What does the singular number denote?
    The Singular Number denotes but one object.
  2. What does the the plural number denote?
    The Plural Number denotes more than one object.
  3. Give some of the ways of forming the plural number.
    There are many ways forming plurals.  First, the plural of any noun ending with a sound that will readily unite with the sound represented by s, is formed by adding -s to the singular, as fan, fans.  Second, the plural of any word ending with a sound that will not readily unite with the sound represented by s, is formed by adding -es to the singular, when the singular does not end with e; as church church-es; mass, mass-es. Third, nouns ending in -f or -fe usually change these endings to -ves; Fourth, nouns ending in -y, with a consonant before it, change y to i and add -es; Fifth, a few nouns are alike in both numbers; as sheep, deer.  Sixth, letters, figures, marks, and signs add ‘s; as b’s, 6’s, *’s 3’s.

Exam