Subject Verb Agreement Using Neither

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    Subject-verb agreement is one of the most important grammar rules to follow when writing in English. This rule states that the subject and verb in a sentence must agree in number. However, when using the word “neither,” things can become a bit tricky.

    “Neither” is a singular pronoun, which means that it should be followed by a singular verb. This can be confusing because “neither” is often used to refer to two things or people. For example, consider the sentence: “Neither John nor Sarah is coming to the party.” In this sentence, “neither” is referring to two people, but the verb “is” agrees with the singular “neither” and not the plural subjects.

    Another common mistake with “neither” is to use a plural verb when it is followed by “nor.” For example, consider the sentence: “Neither the dog nor the cat were in the house.” In this case, “neither” is followed by “nor,” which indicates that both the dog and the cat are being referred to as the subject. Therefore, the verb “were” should be singular to agree with the singular “neither.”

    It`s important to note that when “neither” is followed by “or,” the verb should agree with the subject that comes immediately after “or.” For example, consider the sentence: “Neither the cat nor the dogs are friendly.” In this sentence, “dogs” is the subject that immediately follows “or,” so the verb “are” should be plural to agree with the plural “dogs.”

    In summary, when using “neither,” it`s important to remember that it is a singular pronoun and should be followed by a singular verb. When it is followed by “nor,” the verb should agree with the subject that follows “nor.” By mastering the rules of subject-verb agreement with “neither,” you can improve the clarity and precision of your writing and avoid common mistakes.