This is a discussion thread · 13 replies
Forums · General English Grammar & Vocabulary, Listening & Speaking · General English Grammar Questions
"These bonds that you build with the people you see and live with every day are what makes a community, what turns a place from an address to home."
Isn't the word "makes" right there obviously erroneaus?
Because, in my opinion, the subject is a pluralized term(these bonds), how come it's attached to a singular noun that's supposed to stand for it?
Thanks for answering in advance.
Anonymous:Strictly speaking you are correct. However, I read the sentence in question without noticing anything wrong until I read your question. So I guess the bottom line is that it's acceptable to a native speaker even if it is technically incorrect.
chivalryThese bonds . . . . are what makes a community . . . .***It seems to me that "what" is singular, regardless of the antecedent.***Edit. This statement is clearly incorrect! Within the clause "what makes a community," the singular verb is correct.
Edit. Maybe I'm completely wrong.
I'm sure we'd ask, "What are the rules?"
Hmm, maybe this doesn't apply. The subject here is "rules." The rules are what. ("Are" agrees with "rules.")
Anyway, good question! - A.
How about, "The rules are what it is all about."
Must we say, "The rules are what they are all about" ?
You are right. As the sentence is written, it should have been..
- These bonds .. make a community ..
The author could have said or written something like: "The bonds that we build with other people: that is what makes a community". And then the "makes" would have been OK
AvangiI'm sure we'd ask, "What are the rules?"Yes, and the subject is plural - rules.
What is the matter?
What's the beef?
I think the original text is OK if referent is being treated as a singular collection. - The combination of all the bonds together makes a community.
On second thought, the plural is probably better.
So you could say "We are what makes this community," or "We are what make this community,"
depending on what you mean?
The more I say it the less certain I am! What makes this community great? We does! (Just kidding!)
dave_anonit should have been..Hi, Dave.
Do you mean Chivalry should have eliminated the relative clause, or do you mean the sentence should correctly be,
"These bonds that you build with the people you see and live with every day are what make a community . . . . "?
I agree that your replacement choice makes the singular more palatable.
"The bonds that we build with other people: that is what makes a community".
But you haven't really escaped the plural, have you? (I think you've only slightly insulated it.)
Shouldn't we say, "The bonds that we build with other people: Those are what make a community." ?
I agree, "that" can refer to a whole idea, but there's no finite verb.
We build bonds: that is what makes a community. This I could not argue with.
Best regards, - A.
I was just agreeing with Chivalry. One reason I decided that was by taking everything out of the sentence except the relevant bits. (It was just my idiomatic way of thinking about the problem)..
- These bonds .. makes a community
- These bonds .. make a community
The first sounds definitely wrong; the second one, I'm sure, is right.
Once that is decided, everything can be put back in..
- These bonds that you build with the people you see and live with every day are what make a community
The point that you and Alphecca seemed to be raising is interesting - does the "what" remove the need for a plural verb..
- The books are what makes this library
- The books are what make this library
I'm open to argument, but I'd still go with the second because the first implies: the books makes this library
Best regards - do get back to me - Dave
People are waiting to help.
Live chatRegistered users can join here
Related forum topics:
A passage on /ng/?a passage?Grammar of paragraphs?Grammar of three paragraphs?A PAssage to Harvard?Isn't she pretty?Isn't it incorrect?passageIsn't this incorrect? - "What really needs...isn't it, is it not, is not it?correct paragraphs?Correct the grammar of the paragraphs.?This sentence isn't grammatical is it?Is it or isn't it?Isn't this ungrammatical?An analysis of a passage?Proofread paragraphs please?What's the author's purpose in writing the...Is 'Will be leaving' incorrect?