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Quantifiers + Single Countable Nouns
Examples of quantifiers used here with single countable nouns include aaneacheither, everyneither, and one.

 

Examples:

  • A rubber duck is floating in the bath.
  • An evil monster like him has no friends.
  • He had a tattoo of a dragon on each arm.
  • We can walk either way to the administrative office.
  • Every child received a lollipop.
  • Neither sweater is too big for me.
  • One page is missing from my cookery book.

 

Quantifiers + Plural Countable Nouns
Quantifiers used with plural countable nouns are both, many, several, and two.  

 

Examples:

  • Both donkeys are braying at the same time.
  • Someone stole several piglets from his farm.
  • I think he is putting too many eggs in one basket.
  • Only two restaurants serve vegetarian meals around here.

 

Few and a few
Few and a few come before plural countable nouns. Few (without a) conveys a negative meaning of only a small number or hardly any and not enougha few has a positive meaning of having some but enough.

 

Examples:

  • There were a few casualties in the train accident. (= Not many died or injured.)
  • A few bakeries along this street sell freshly baked bread.
  • Few passers-by stopped to look at my paintings. (= Almost no passers-by were interested.)

 

Quantity word + of: Countable Nouns
The quantity word + of are used when there are specific countable nouns or noun phrases. If they are general ones, the quantity word + of are not used. The quantity word + of terms used here are a couple of, a great number of, a large number of, a number ofeither of, and most of.

 

Examples:

  • A couple of people began to talk louder and louder after the third round of drinks.
  • A great number of locusts swarmed the area.
  • Illegal loggers cut down a large number of trees.
  • A number of her friends agreed with her that she looked overweight.
  • We will use either of the parents’ cars for the trip.
  • Most of the shops in the area are closed at this time. 

 

The number of and a number of
The word number is singular. But when it is followed by of (number + of), it can be the number of or a number of. The difference between these two quantifier expressions is that the number of is followed by a singular verb while a number of is followed by a plural verb. The reason is the number of is not used to mean many; It is just a collective term of many, while a number of is used to mean many

 

Examples:

  • The number of tourists who visit this resort at the weekends is in the hundreds.
  • A number of tourists have been robbed over the weekend.
  • No: There is a number of books on palmistry in the library.
  • Yes: There are a number of books on palmistry in the library.

 

Cardinal number and Ordinal number
A cardinal number is used to show the quantity of people or things, and is used as a determiner.

 

Examples:

  • Twenty people were badly hurt in an accident involving a car, a bus and a lorry.
  • Thirty-two children form an orderly queue.
  • We counted forty-six pigs in the farm.
  • The car-park can accommodate up to sixty-five cars.  

 

An ordinal number is a number such as first, second, thirtieth, twenty-third, or 200th that shows the numerical position of someone or something in a list. An ordinal number is used as a determiner.

Examples:

  • We occupied the third row from the front
  • This year is our tenth wedding anniversary..
  • I was the twelfth person in the queue when I joined it.
  • She received a special gift for being the thousandth customer in the new supermarket.