The Sunday News
NOUNS which form their plurals by adding “s”: examples are – one desk – two desks, one stick – two sticks, one pen – two pens, two –twos, three –threes, four – fours, and five – fives. Look at the following: one bus, one match, one bush, one fox. Two buses, three matches, bushes, and five foxes. All these words form their plurals with ‘es’ because they end in ‘s’, ‘ch’, or ‘x’.
Here is a list of words which form their plural in ‘es’, for example: class, glass, cross, mass, gas, witch, torch, finch, punch, church, wish, dish, rash, gash, marsh, box, tax. For most words ending in ‘o’ the plural is formed by adding ‘es’. For example: tomato – tomatoes, potato – potatoes. For nouns that are the names of musical instruments and in ‘o’, the plural is formed by ‘s’. Examples: piano – pianos, cello – cellos.
Words ending in ‘o’ that are shortened forms also form their plural by adding ‘s’. For example: hippo – hippos, photo – photos.
Nouns ending in ‘oo’ also form their plural by adding ‘s’. For example: bamboo – bamboos. Nouns ending in ‘y’ – baby, boy, toy, puppy, city.
Their plural forms are: baby – babies, boy – boys, toy – toys, puppy – puppies and city – cities. There is a rule about the pluralisation of nouns ending in ‘y’.
The rule is: if the letter before the ‘y’ is a vowel add‘s’. If the letter before the ‘y’ is a consonant, drop the ‘y’ and add ‘ies’.
Examples: cherry – cherries, diary – diaries, lily – lilies, lady – ladies, army – armies, pony – ponies, key- keys, day – days, tray – trays, bay – bays, ray – rays, ways. Nouns which have different words as their plural: one child – two children, one person – two persons, one foot – two feet, woman – women, man, men, tooth – teeth, goose – geese, mouse – mice, postman o postmen.
Plurals of nouns which end in ‘f’ or ‘fe’: calf – calves, half – halves, knife – knives, life – lives, loaf – loaves, scarf – scarves, sheaf – sheaves, shelf – shelves, thief – thieves, wolf – wolves. For some ‘f’ and ‘fe’ nouns the plural is formed by adding ‘s’. Further examples are: chief – chiefs, cliff – cliffs, dwarf – dwarfs, gulf – gulfs, handkerchief – handkerchiefs, muff – muffs, reef – reefs, roof – roofs, sheriff – sheriffs.
Write the plural forms of the following nouns: bird, watch, flash, crab, piano, tree, ditch, lorry, chimney, hobby, motorway, and valley.
Collective nouns refers to nouns which identify a group of people, a herd (cows, elephants)a bunch of (grapes, bananas, keys).
More examples of collective nouns – a collection or group of people living in the same house and related is a family.
A group of birds is a flock and we talk of a bunch of bananas. A swarm of bees, a herd of cattle, a pack of cards.
Possessive pronouns – As previously promised we get to understand personal pronouns. You need to distinguish between personal pronouns, I, you, him, it, and possessive pronouns, for example, mine, yours and hers.
The main difficulty with possessive pronouns is distinguishing them form possessive adjectives. The latter (that is possessive adjectives), stand in front of a noun, for instance, her book, my jacket, your pencil, whereas, possessive pronouns do not, for example: The book is hers, The jacket is mine or the letter is yours.
Which possessive pronoun? Rewrite each sentence using a possessive pronoun instead of repeating the noun.
Follow the given example: The pen is my pen. The pen is mine. These chairs are your chairs. The black pen is his black pen.
Those shoes are her shoes. These bags are our bags. Those dogs are their dogs.
Adjectives of degree: I assume that learners basically know what adjectives are. Today we look at adjectives of degree.
Adjectives can show degree of intensity in three main ways: through a list of adjectives showing ascending or descending intensity, for instance, hot, warm, tepid, through use of the comparative and superlative forms.
Examples: ‘hot’, ‘hotter’, ‘hottest’ and through the addition of adverbs. For instance – very quiet, quite small, rather loud.
More’ and ‘most’ in front of some adjectives form their comparative and superlative.
For example, ‘frightening’, more ‘frightening’, most frightening. Let us suppose you have the adjective hot describing the weather, what similar words can you think of? You can think of words like, warm, sweltering, scorching, steaming, burning, boiling, tropical and clammy. The same could be done for cold which is the opposite of hot.
Words similar to cold could be: frosty, cool, bitter, arctic, bleak, chilly and freezing to mention but a few.
The importance of such activities is to extend your vocabulary and appreciate that carefully chosen adjectives will enhance your writing.
Why do you think we need so many words for hot and cold? Why are these two words not always sufficient to convey what we want to say? Note that we can use adjectives like warm, hot and freezing to compare things.
Examples: The weather was freezing yesterday but it is scorching today. It was cold last night, but it is warmer this morning.
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