#EngQuiz: irregular plural

Tonight’s #EngQuiz is about “irregular plural”. Do you know what this is?

There are two plural forms of noun: “regular” and “irregular”.

We form regular plural of nouns by adding -s or -es. Examples:

  1. book -> books
  2. shoe -> shoes
  3. watch -> watches
  4. diary -> diaries

Irregular plurals are exceptions to this general rule.

Some common irregular plurals:

  1. man -> men
  2. person -> people
  3. foot -> feet

There are many types of irregular plurals based on how they are formed:

  1. Changing the vowels. Examples: man -> men; foot -> feet.
  2. Adding -(r)en. Examples: child -> children; ox -> oxen.
  3. Changing the last consonant. Examples: leaf -> leaves; wife -> wives.
  4. The plural is the same as the singular. Examples: deer -> deer; sheep -> sheep.
  5. Foreign plurals. Examples: alga -> algae.
  6. Last but not least.. Compound nouns. Examples: head of department -> heads of department; sister-in-law -> sisters-in-law.

Now to the #EngQuiz! Your job is.. to guess what are the plurals of these nouns. There’s only 1 clue: they are all irregular plurals. Ready?

  1. Mouse
  2. Tooth
  3. Life
  4. Wolf
  5. Chinese
  6. Species
  7. Dice (die)*
  8. Formula
  9. Medium
  10. Curriculum
  11. Millennium
  12. Appendix
  13. Diagnosis
  14. Oasis
  15. Crisis
  16. Thesis
  17. Phenomenon
  18. Commander-in-chief

ANSWER KEY

  1. mouse -> mice
  2. tooth -> teeth
  3. life -> lives
  4. wolf -> wolves
  5. Chinese -> Chinese
  6. species -> species
  7. dice -> dice
  8. formula -> formulae (formulas)*
  9. medium -> media
  10. curriculum -> curricula
  11. millennium -> millennia
  12. appendix -> appendices
  13. diagnosis -> diagnoses
  14. oasis -> oases
  15. crisis -> crises
  16. thesis -> theses
  17. phenomenon -> phenomena
  18. commander-in-chief -> commanders-in-chief

*NOTES:

The singular of “dice” (dadu) is “die”. However, in modern standard English, “dice” is used as both the singular and plural form. Read more here: What is the singular for dice?

The plural of “formula” can be “formulae” or “formulas”. Read more here: Formula or formulae?

Compiled by @NenoNeno at @EnglishTips4U on September 10, 2012

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