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Writers' Center

Eastern Washington University

Grammar, Punctuation, and Sentences

Plural Nouns

The easiest way to make a singular noun plural is to add “s.”

Singular                               Plural

dog                                        dogs

lake                                       lakes


Exception #1: Add “es” to a noun ending in “s,” “x,” “z,” “ch,” or “sh.”

Singular                               Plural

kiss                                        kisses

mix                                        mixes

quiz                                       quizzes

church                                 churches

bush                                      bushes


Exception #2: Add “ies” to a noun ending in a consonant plus “y.”

Singular                               Plural

city                                        cities


Exception #3: Some plural nouns are irregular, and unfortunately you just have to memorize them. Here are some examples:

Singular                               Plural

man                                       men

woman                                women

life                                          lives


Exception #4: Some nouns sound plural, but they are actually singular.

Mathematics is my favorite subject.

The local news is covering the story tonight.


Exception #5: Some plural nouns seem like singular items, but they actually take a plural verb.

My jeans are frayed and dirty.

My glasses are foggy.