Do you disagree with something on this page. ThoughtCo uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. If you're uncomfortable treating a collective noun as singular or plural, put a term like. Once you've decided whether your collective noun is singular or plural, be consistent throughout your sentence. It is also known as a group noun. In American English, collective nouns usually take singular verb forms. Willam Cobbet noted in 1818: Collective nouns can also add humor to any written piece. You can’t have a team without individual members; even so, we discuss a … Collective noun is the name we give to a group of nouns to refer to them as one entity. Collective nouns are words for single things that are made up of more than one person, animal, place, thing, or idea. Dr. Richard Nordquist is professor emeritus of rhetoric and English at Georgia Southern University and the author of several university-level grammar and composition textbooks. For example, "family" is a collective noun because it refers to more than one person sharing a relationship. A collective noun identifies nouns collectively. Collective nouns are words for single things that are made up of more than one person, place, animal, thing, or idea. Nouns such as team, group, herd, flock, jury, gang, choir, class, etc. A collective noun refers to a group of people, animals or a collection of things taken as a whole. Using Collective Nouns Correctly Nouns in the collective class can be used in either the singular or plural form, depending on the context of the sentence. In the following examples, the collective noun or nouns are listed in italics. How Does Concord Apply to English Grammar? Collective Nouns Are Singular But Often With Plural Meaning, Nobody, No One, and None: How to Choose the Right Word, Ph.D., Rhetoric and English, University of Georgia, M.A., Modern English and American Literature, University of Leicester, B.A., English, State University of New York. Using the "wrong" collective noun could be a useful creative-writing technique. Overlook Press, 2008). A collective noun, as mentioned above, is a special class of nouns that name groups composed of members. Straight talking and methodical, "Smashing Grammar" (Our Grammar Book, 2019), I have played some of my best tennis away from home, but it can be tough when the. A collective noun is a noun—such as team, committee, jury, squad, orchestra, crowd, audience, and family—that refers to a group of individuals. A collective noun is a noun—such as team, committee, jury, squad, orchestra, crowd, audience, and family—that refers to a group of individuals. "Many noncount nouns have an equivalent countable expression using such words as piece or bit (partitive or collective nouns) followed by of: "Venereal noun: A noun denoting a collection of persons or things regarded as a unit, defining them through word play...". In the infographic below, the collective nouns are shown in yellow. The notion of collective nouns dates back centuries. A collective noun is the word used to represent a group of people, animals, or things. The most common method of doing this is by using words like group or bunch that can be applicable to most of the nouns in the language today. Words like Flock, Crowd and Staff are collective noun examples. Here is most important 100 examples of collective nouns; 1.a heap of rubbish Collective nouns can be replaced by both singular and plural pronouns, depending on their meaning. Collective nouns are words for single things, yet these single things are … A collective noun is a type of noun that identifies groups of people and things. What Is the Subject-Verb Agreement in English Grammar? It is also known as a group noun. However, you can also use this in its plural form to refer to several "families." are examples of collective nouns. (David Crystal, "By Hook or by Crook: A Journey in Search of English." Vocational rather than academic, "Grammar for Grown-ups" is packed with real-life examples and keeps you engaged with a wealth of great quotations from Homer the Greek to Homer the Simpson. There are lots of collective nouns. By using ThoughtCo, you accept our, Understanding the Types of Nouns in English Grammar, Definition and Examples of Pronoun Agreement, Definition and Examples of Agreement in English Grammar, When to Use a Singular or Plural Verb in Spanish.