a great deal with countable nouns

awa131

Senior Member
Polish
Hello
I have found the following sentence in my coursebook -'There are a great deal of obstacles to get over before the new town can be built' is it correct? So far I have thought that a great deal is used only with uncountable nouns. Do you accept it with countable nouns too?
Thank you for your replies.
Awa131
 
  • JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    I wouldn't use it. I'd say "a great many obstacles." I wouldn't be at all surprised to hear this in speech because it's so common for someone to start to say one thing and then switch in mid-sentence, creating an error. For example, if he started to say "a great deal of opposition" and then switched to "obstacles" after he's already said "a great deal," he'd end up with an understandable error. But in writing, it looks wrong to me and I can't think of a reason for it.
     
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