Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Levels of Distractibility: Who cares? = *. Some people will be distracted from your meaning: = **. Many people will be distracted from your meaning: = ***.

Question: What follows "None"? "Is" or "Are"?

Answer: I'm from the old school. "None" means to me "Not one." "One" is singular, so the verb is "is." "None of the students is going." The phrase "of the students" confuses the issue because it is plural. Still, the subject is "None" and "None" means "Not one...." and, therefore, the verb is "is."

People who are from the "new" school believe that either a singular or plural verb can follow "None."

Rating of Distractibility: (*). Unless you're dealing with a complete purist like me, no one will worry whether the verb is singular or plural. I have grown used to hearing "None" followed by the singular verb, but I would not correct someone else's use of "None" with the plural.

No comments: