Subject-Verb Agreement English Grammar For Class 6
The Verb in a sentence always agrees with its Subject in number and person.
When the Subject is singular, the Verb must be singular.
When the Subject is plural, the Verb must be plural.
Study the following examples:
1. The boy goes to school every day.
2. The boys go to school every day.
3. Our teacher was absent yesterday.
4. Lions hunt in a group.
5. Sudha and Shazia are friends.
6. They don’t like eggs.
7. The children were playing cards.
8. I am the monitor of the class.
9. My uncle has two children. Tan
10. The referee does not know the rules.
11. The baby is crying.
12. They go to temple every day.
In sentences 1, 3, 8, 9, 10 and 11, the subjects and verbs are in singular and in sentences 2, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 12, the subjects and verbs are in plural.
SINGULAR SUBJECTS THAT LOOK PLURAL
Some subjects look plural in number though they are singular. They must take singular verbs.
In the following sentences, subjects are singular but they look plural.
1. Ten miles is a long distance.
2. Five hundred rupees is not a small amount.
3. Measles is a common disease.
4. The news was false.
5. Mathematics is a difficult subject.
6. The price of mangoes has gone up.
From the above examples, we see that singular subjects must agree with singular verbs.
The verb must agree with the subject in number.
Some more examples:
1. Monika and Anushka are in my class.
2. She likes curry and rice.
3. We like cricket more than volleyball.
4. The hen and her chicks are in the coop.
5. The peacock is a beautiful bird.
1. A verb has three Persons First Person, Second Person and Third Person.
1. I like.
2. You like.
3. He likes.
In sentence 1, the Subject is in the First Person and the Verb is also in the First Person. Thus, it agrees with the Subject.
In sentence 2, the Subject is in the Second Person, therefore the Verb is also in the Second Person.
In sentence 3, the Subject is in the Third Person and the Verb is also in the Third Person.
The verb must agree with the subject in person.
Read some more examples.
1. I am a good boy.
2. She is an intelligent girl.
3. These are interesting books.
4. You are a naughty girl.
5. This is a good place to live.
2. If the Subject consists of two or more Singular Nouns or Pronouns, joined by ‘and’, it takes a Plural Verb.
1. Suman and Lata are fast friends.
2. He and his friend have passed the examination.
3. Tea and coffee grow in India.
4. Ram, Shyam and Mohan attend the same school.
5. He and I are real brothers.
3. But, if two Singular Nouns refer to the same person or thing, the Verb is singular.
1. Mohan, the head boy of my class, has come.
(Here, Mohan as well as the head boy is the same person).
2. My cousin and friend has stood first.
(Here, cousin as well as friend is the same person).
4. When the Subject consists of two Nouns or Pronouns joined by ‘with’ or ‘as well as’, the Verb agrees with the first Noun or Pronoun.
1. Iron as well as gold is found in India.
2. All the cricket players, with the coach, are present in the ground.
3. The king, with his bodyguards, was welcomed.
4. Rita, with her brothers, is going to see the fair.
5. They, as well as I, are going to attend the meeting.
6. The captain, with his players, is present.
5. When two or more singular Subjects are joined by ‘or’, ‘ nor’, ‘either-or’ and ‘neither-nor’, these take the Verbs in the singular form.
1. Neither food nor water was available.
2. Neither Ram nor Sham was present. 3. Neither John nor Joseph was present.
4. Either Verma or Sharma was absent.
5. Either Mohini or Rekha has passed.
6. Either you or I am to go there.
7. No boy or girl was left behind.
6. When the Subjects joined by ‘or’ or ‘nor’ are of different numbers or persons, the Verb agrees with the Subject nearest to it.
1. Either you or he is to be blamed.
2. Rakesh or his friends have helped him.
3. Neither Rohan nor his parents have gone to Amritsar.
4. Neither she nor I am at fault.
7. ‘Each’, ‘either’, ‘neither’, ‘every’, ‘everyone’ and ‘one of them’ take Singular Verbs.
1. Every boy and every girl is punctual.
2. Each of these boys plays well.
3. One of the thieves was arrested by the police.
4. Either of the two players has played well.
5. Everyone knows the secret now.
6. Neither of the two ideas is acceptable.
8. ‘Much’, ‘a little’, ‘many a’ must be followed by Verbs in singular forms.
1. Too much of everything is bad.
2. Many a boy has failed to complete his work.
3. Much has already been done.
4. Only a little work has been completed.
9. If definite article ‘the’ is used before each of the two Nouns, then two distinct persons are meant and the Verb used is in the Plural number.
1. The accountant and the clerk have been selected.
2. The manager and the cashier have been dismissed.
3. The officer and the peon have been suspended.
10. If two singular Subjects together express one idea, the Verb is in the Singular form.
1. Slow and steady wins the race.
2. Bread and butter is my daily breakfast.
3. Rice and curry is my favourite food.
11. When some specific quantity or amount is considered to be one whole the Verb is used in the singular form.
1. Five hundred rupees is not a big amount.
2. Distance of twenty kilometres was covered in only one hour.
12. Some Nouns, which are plural in form but singular in meaning, take singular Verbs.
1. The information is correct.
2. The news is correct.
3. Measles is a common disease.
4. Mathematics is a difficult subject.
5. The price of bananas has gone up.
13. A Collective Noun may take a singular or plural verb. If the collection is thought of as a whole, the verb is singular, but if the individuals or members of the group are thought of separately, the verb is plural.
1. The committee was of one opinion. (Singular verb ‘was’)
The committee were divided in their opinions. (Plural verb ‘were’)
2. There is a large number of boys in this class. (Singular verb ‘is’)
A large number of boys were caught copying. (Plural verb ‘ were’)
Note: This rule applies to: jury, crew, mob, council, cabinet, etc.
14. When a plural Noun is the name of one thing, it takes a singular verb.
1. The United States of America is a rich country.
2. The CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) was earlier called USSR.
15. A few’, ‘several’, ‘both’, and ‘ many’ are always followed by plural Verbs.
1. A few of these quarters are still vacant.
2. Several of these offices are open today.
3. Both the boys have failed the examination.
4. Many of these students were present yesterday.
16. A Collective Noun takes a singular Verb.
1. The crew was large.
2. The fleet has set sail.
3. The jury was unanimous in its decision.
Fill in the blanks in the following sentences with one of the Verbs given brackets which agrees with the subject:
1. How many toys does your brother …………. (has/have)?
2. Two and two …………. (make/makes) four.
3. …………… (Has/Have) someone closed the door?
4. Mrs. Verma’s children ……….. (are/is) very naughty.
5. The mother of these children ………. (is/are) a doctor.
6. How many legs ……… (do/does) this chair have?
7. I ……………….. (does not/do not) exercise every day.
8. One of the two boys…….. (is/are) telling a lie.
9. Economics …………. (is/are) my favourite subject.
10. Every member ……………. (has/have) the right to vote.
11. Bread and butter …………… (make/makes) good breakfast.
12. Five kilometers ……………….. (is/are) a long walk.
13. Sachin, one of the best players, …………………. (has/have) joined.
14. Each of the oranges ………. (was/were) spoiled.
In some of the following sentences, the subject and the verb do not agree. Strike off the incorrect verb and write the correct verb in the space provided.
1. Either Krishnan or his sons is going to repair our fridge.
2. The news are good tonight.
3. Everyone are writing his notebook.
4. All the members of the family is coming to the party.
5. Mathematics has always been my favourite subject.
6. The hundred rupees he gave me was spent in no time.
7. The carton of eggs are on the table.
8. John, as well as his two cousins, calls on me every day.
9. My two brothers, along with mother, visits me every Sunday.
10. Neither the children nor their mother has ever travelled by air.
Fill in the blanks in the following sentences with one of the Verbs given in brackets:
1. The mother, with her daughters, ………………. (have/has) left the house.
2. Much of money………………. (has/have) been wasted.
3. No news…………….(is/are) good news.
4. You as well as he …………… (are/is) intelligent.
5. Game after game………………. (was/were) played.
6. Fifty metres………………. (is/are) a good distance.
7. None of you ………………. (has/have) done this work seriously.
8. Each of the students………………. (sing) well.
9. Copper as well as aluminium…………… (are/is) found in India.
10. Which of these two books ………………. (is/are) yours?
11. The leader with his followers………………. (was/were) present.
12. Either you or he ………… (was/were) absent yesterday.
13. A good man and a responsible citizen ………….. (have/has) passed away.
14. Neither of them ………………. (was/were) right.
15. Rita and Gita ………………. (is/are) fast friends.
Fill in the blanks in the following sentences with one of the Verbs given in brackets, in agreement with the Subject:
1. Fifty rupees………………. (is/are) too much for this article.
2. The book Gulliver’s Travels ………. (is/are) read by all boys and girls.
3. The flock ……….(was/were) grazing in the field.
4. The leader and the patriot…………….(was/were) present at the meeting.
5. A little quantity of milk……. (was/were) given to children.
6. Many a boy…………… (has/have) failed to pass the examination.
7. A few coins……. (is/are) there in my pocket.
8. Several people ……….. (was/were) injured in the accident.
9. Both the thieves…………….. (has/have) been punished.
10. Many of these girls………. (has/have) failed.
11. Much help ………….. (has/have) already been given to him.
12. One of the passengers ……….. (has/have) been hurt.
13. Everyone in my family …………. (respect/respects) others.
14. Each of the girls ………………….. (was/were) rewarded.
15. Either you or I …………… (are/am) in the wrong.
Tick (/) the correct verb given in each bracket:
1. Mathematics (are/is) a difficult subject.
2. The king with his attendants (are/is) attending the meeting.
3. Neither of the two boys (were/was) injured in the accident.
4. The farmer as well as his sons (was/were) lazy.
5. Rice and curry (is/are) his favourite dish.
6. Bread and butter (are/is) a nice breakfast.
7. The donkey as well as the horse (eats/eat) grass.
8. The cost of apples (has/have) shot up.
9. The ship with its entire crew (is/are) lost.
10. Each of your answers (are/is) wrong.
11. Every man, woman and child (wasfwere) happy
12. The songs of this movie (are/is) very melodious.
13. Both of these buildings (is/are) well built.
14. Nobody but Mohan and Sohan (were/was) there.
17. The Arabian Nights’ (is/are) an interesting book.
15. Twenty miles (is/are) a long distance.
16. Vimla, Kamla and Bimla (are/is) my sisters.
18. The quality of these sweets (is/are) not good.
19. Neither he nor I (deserves/deserve) the prize.
20. Neither Ramesh nor Dinesh (has/have) stopped work