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Rule 15: Numerical Expressions/ Quantitative Expressions and the Verb (a) 'A Number of is used for indefinite number Plural Verb (As Indefinite number is treated as Plural) e.g., A number of students have come. A number of children are playing. (b) The Number of is used for Definite number -Singular Verb (As definite number is treated as Singular) e.g., The number of graduates is increasing The number of guests varies.
(c) Singular Verb is used with Quantitative Expressions. (Either Definite or Indefinite as Quantity is treated as Singular) e.g., A lot of butter has been purchased much of milk has turned sour. A good deal of food is found to be tasteless.
Rule 16: Many a/an + Singular Noun/ More than one; structured sentences have Verb in Singular Number because the form of the sentence is singular (Subject singular but meaning plural). e.g., Many an opportunity is missed by negligence. More than one chance was given to him. Note: But if the structure of the sentence is changed as More + Plural Subject +Than one, then Plural Verb should be used. e.g., More opportunities than one are missed by negligence. More chances than one were given to him