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I instinctively used "is" for this sentence, but then I realized that I don't know which grammar rule says so. It doesn't look like grammatical concord. Is it a kind of notional concord?

Also, which one is correct?
Four men are too many.
Four men is too many.
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You're talking about a grouping of years, a period, thus "is."
Both is/are for the 2nd, depending on whether you're talking about them as a group or not.
Thanks, Marius. Yes, I know it's because we are talking about a period. What I wanted to know is whether there is a name for this. Can we call "two years" a collective noun? It doesn't look like a collective noun because collective nouns do not have singular/plural forms, e.g. the audience, the cabinet.
For the second one, the meaning of the sentence is pretty clear. I don't need four men, maybe just three. I inclined to say, "four men is too many", but I'm not too sure.
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Hi Pter

Audience and cabinet are countable nouns.
I believe they are countable nouns only if we are talking about multiple audiences or cabinets, otherwise, they are called collective nouns that can be either plural or singluar depending on the context. No?

My question is I have never seen anybody calling "two years" or "four men" collective nouns.
The period of two years is long enough, or too long. You use the singular to refer to a "chunk" of something, whether it's time, distance, etc.

A group that consists of four men is more than enough manpower.

The parts in italics are understood to be what is really the unstated subject.
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PterI believe they are countable nouns only if we are talking about multiple audiences or cabinets, otherwise, they are called collective nouns that can be either plural or singluar depending on the context. No?

... they are called collective nouns that can be either plural or singluar depending on the context.

I agree, but just because they can used in the singular or plural depending on context doesn't make them uncountable nouns.

<<>> but just because they can [be] used in the singular or plural, depending on context, doesn't make them uncountable nouns.
Hi YL, I am not saying they are uncountabe nouns. I said they are collective nouns.
Thanks GG. I understand the reason why the singular is used, but just don't know if there is a grammatical term for this.
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