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Hi teachers,
Is that the reason?
Do we use the verb 'are' in plural in the following sentence because we are talking about two cars together.
Both (the two) of the cars are expensive.
Do we use the verb 'is' in singular in the following sentence because we are talking about each car separately?
Or is it because 'neither' is an indefinite pronoun, an indefinite pronouns take singular verbs?
Neither (one) of the cars is expensive.

Are they suitable definitions?
Both means ‘the one and the other’.
Neither means ‘not one and not the other’.

Thanks in advance.
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Comments  
Thinking SpainDo we use the verb 'are' in plural in the following sentence because we are talking about two cars together.Both (the two) of the cars are expensive.
Yes. That's a reasonable explanation.
Thinking SpainDo we use the verb 'is' in singular in the following sentence because we are talking about each car separately?Or is it because 'neither' is an indefinite pronoun, an indefinite pronouns take singular verbs?Neither (one) of the cars is expensive.
You can explain it either way. The first way sounds like a better explanation to me.
Thinking SpainAre they suitable definitions?Both means ‘the one and the other’.Neither means ‘not one and not the other’.
They seem suitable to me.

CJ
Thinking SpainDo we use the verb 'are' in plural in the following sentence because we are talking about two cars together.
Both (the two) of the cars are expensive.
Yes. Both is always plural.
Thinking SpainDo we use the verb 'is' in singular in the following sentence because we are talking about each car separately?
Or is it because 'neither' is an indefinite pronoun, an indefinite pronouns take singular verbs?
Neither (one) of the cars is expensive.
The former. Not all indefinite pronouns (or determiners, whatever you want to call them) are singular, as indicated above. (Ν)either is usually singular, with the exception that the verb should agree with the last of two or more alternatives, e.g., Neither the manager nor the pounders are here vs. Neither the pounders nor the manager is here. The reason for this "rule" is that it helps the flow of the sentence, I think.

Note that many would not regard Neither of the cars are expenseive as wrong because this use is so common these days, probably even more common.
Thinking SpainAre they suitable definitions?
Both means ‘the one and the other’.
Neither means ‘not one and not the other’.
Almost. Neither means not one or the other.
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
Hi Jim,
Thank you so much for your reply. I'm happy that I was right. It doesn't happen very often.Emotion: smile

TS
Aspara GusNote that many would not regard Neither of the cars are expenseive as wrong because this use is so common these days, probably even more common.
Hi Aspara Gus,
Thank you so much for your reply and additional comments too. I tell that to my students too. The plural is used in every day speech.

TS
Aspara GusNeither means not one or the other.
This doesn't seem right to me.

Neither of the cars is red. = One of the (two) cars is not red or? the other car is not red.

It seems to allow that if one car is blue and the other red, you can still say "Neither of the cars is red".

Emotion: tongue tied
CJ
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CalifJimThis doesn't seem right to me.
Neither of the cars is red. = One of the (two) cars is not red or? the other car is not red.
It seems to allow that if one car is blue and the other red, you can still say "Neither of the cars is red".
I see where you're coming from. Many dictionaries define it that way, so I went with it. I think it is more accurately not one nor the other. Does this sound right to you?
Aspara GusI think it is more accurately not one nor the other.
Sounds good to me. One of the definitions of 'nor' is 'and not', so how could I disagree? Emotion: smile

CJ
When I read Neither means ‘not one and not the other’ I objected right away because and seemed to contradict the word's singular nature, so I went with the dictionary's definition: not one thing or the other, which accounts for the singularity.

Have I lost my marbles here? Do you have an opinion, CJ?

Thanks
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