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Nouns (Irregular Plural) 01
'I keep several mice and this is the bravest mouse that I own'. Note that 'mice' is a collective noun for 'mouse'.

Nouns (Irregular Plural) 01

Wolves, lives and thieves are examples of irregular plural nouns. Although it may seem as if some nouns have irregular plurals which don't follow any rules, usually they do, only the rules they follow are very old!

With the examples of "wolves", "lives" and "thieves", the rule dictates that the f or -fe of "wolf", "life" and "thief" becomes a v when followed by s/-es. Other irregular plurals change the vowels instead. "Mouse" becomes "mice", for instance, "goose" becomes "geese", and "woman" becomes "women". Other words don't change at all, whether they are singular or plural, as in the case of "sheep" and "fish" (although "fishes" is acceptable where "sheepses" is not). Finally, English has a few words which retain very old plural forms, such as "child"/"children" and "ox"/"oxen". Some words, especially these familiar, domestic and farm-related, words, are not in a hurry to change to regular forms!

Play this quiz to see how well you know your irregular plural nouns.

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1.
Find the plural for the following word.
Mouse
Mice
Mices
Mouses
Mouse's
"Mouse's" means "belonging to a mouse"!
2.
Find the plural for the following word.
Goose
Geese
Geeses
Gooses
Goose's
But "moose" is the same whether singular or plural
3.
Find the plural for the following word.
Woman
Womans
Woman's
Women
Women's
"Woman's" means "belonging to a woman"
4.
Find the plural for the following word.
Child
Children
Childrens
Childs
Child's
Not "childs"!
5.
Find the plural for the following word.
Foot
Feet
Feets
Foots
Foot's
Imagine if the plural of "boot" were "beet"! It's "boots", of course!
6.
Find the plural for the following word.
Die (a cube used to play board games)
Dice
Dices
Dice's
Dies
One cube is a "die" although we usually say "dice" anyway
7.
Find the plural for the following word.
Gentleman
Gentlemans
Gentleman's
Gentlemen
Gentlesmen
It's easy to remember this one, because the plural of "man" is "men"
8.
Find the plural for the following word.
Tooth
Teeth
Teeths
Tooths
Tooth's
But the plural of "booth" is "booths"
9.
Find the plural for the following word.
Ox
Oxen
Oxen's
Oxes
Oxs
But the plural of "fox" is "foxes"
10.
Find the plural for the following word.
Dormouse
Dormice
Dormices
Dormouses
Dormouse's
Remember that the plural of "mouse" is "mice"

 

Author:  Sue Daish

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