Plurals of words of Greek origin): Such -ata plurals also occur in Latin words borrowed from Greek, e.g. ("volumes"). If the latter meaning is intended, the word (though singular in form) may be treated as if it were a plural, in that it may take a plural verb and be replaced with a plural pronoun: (in British English) the government are considering their position (alternatively the government is considering its position). [24] In the examples below, the original plural is now commonly used as a singular, and in some cases a regular English plural (effectively a double plural) has been formed from it. Lambs is the plural of "lamb". Three primary bases may be identified for this: The plural of individual letters is usually written with -'s:[22] there are two h's in this sentence; mind your p's and q's; dot the i's and cross the t's. Lamb is a noun. 'lamb' A lamb is a young sheep. It was originally plural, but in French and English it is always regarded as singular. [6] Similarly, nearly all kinds of fish have no separate plural form (though there are exceptions—such as rays, sharks or lampreys). (This does not always apply; for example, there is the Minnesota Lynx, not *Lynxes.) Usually, in borrowing words from Latin, the endings of the nominative are used: nouns whose nominative singular ends in -a (first declension) have plurals in -ae (anima, animae); nouns whose nominative singular ends in -m (second declension neuter) have plurals in -a (stadium, stadia; datum, data). Similarly, termites was the three-syllable plural of termes; this singular was lost, however, and the plural form reduced to two syllables. Don't use 'sheep' to refer to the meat of a sheep. A distinctive case is the compound film noir. The plural of sheep is sheep. Learn a new word every day. When the common form of such a word is singular, it is treated as if it has a regular plural, even if the final constituent of the word is usually pluralized in an irregular fashion. Phonological transcriptions provided in this article are for Received Pronunciation and General American. (Some of these are Greek rather than Latin words, but the method of plural formation in English is the same.) Some multi-letter abbreviations can be treated the same way, by doubling the final letter: MS ("manuscript"), MSS ("manuscripts"); op. In The Language Instinct, linguist Steven Pinker discusses what he calls "headless words", typically bahuvrihi compounds, such as lowlife and flatfoot, in which life and foot are not heads semantically; that is, a lowlife is not a type of life, and a flatfoot is not a type of foot. In Old and Middle English, voiceless fricatives /f/ and /θ/ mutated to voiced fricatives /v/ and /ð/ respectively before a voiced ending. the legendary monster chupacabras, literally "sucks-goats", or in a more natural English formation "goatsucker") and the plural form of the object noun is retained in both the singular and plural forms of the compound (i.e. The name of the Greek sandwich style gyros is increasingly undergoing a similar transformation. Is it not so? Definition of lamb written for English Language Learners from the Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary with audio pronunciations, usage examples, and count/noncount noun labels. How long will the footprints on the moon last? The majority of English compound nouns have one basic term, or head, with which they end. It is normal to say 1.0 gallons per flush, for instance, 0.6 units, or 3.3 children per couple, not *1.0 gallon, *0.6 unit, or *3.3 child per couple. The meat of an adult sheep is called mutton, but this meat is less common in Britain and America than lamb. Is it different in England/USA/New Zealand/Austrailia? by Lorikeet » Thu Feb 24, 2005 9:12 pm, Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Limited, Forum for the discussion of all aspects of bilingual education .

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