+0
Hi there,

Is there anything wrong with using the plural with generalizations using 'no'? Take the following sentence:

"No cats are black."

It seems like the natural flipside to "all cats are grey", but for some reason I have a feeling that the singular "no cat is black" is 'more correct'.

Maybe this feeling is arising from the existance of phrases like "no man is an island", which when pluralised ("no men are islands") sounds quite strange.

I can't find anything about this in Garner's or on the internet, so maybe I'm inventing grammatical problems for myself... am I worrying over nothing, or is there something wrong with using 'no' with a plural in these cases?

Thanks for your help in advance...
+0
Both are fine: both singular and plural nouns can be negated. Use whichever one seems to sound better to you in the circumstances. 'No man is an island' is familiar (and the alternative strange) because it is a proverb; 'no men are impatient with their third wives' should sound more 'normal'.
Comments  
Thanks a lot for the quick response; I guess sometimes you can think too hard about this grammar business, and invent problems where there are none...