A large bowl of noodles ___ on the desk.

Discussion in 'English Only' started by longxianchen, May 31, 2018.

  1. longxianchen Senior Member

    Hi, friends
    He is a sentence from an exercise book:

    1.A large bowl of noodles ___ on the desk.

    The given answer is is, but I feel it should be are, because the real subject of the sentence is noodles.
    Which one is correct please?

    Thank you in advance
  2. owlman5

    owlman5 Senior Member

    Because it is a bowl of noodles, I see nothing wrong with "is". That is the word I would use to fill the blank. If the sentence was "Noodles are on the desk", "are" would be normal.
  3. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    But the noodles are not on the desk, they are in the bowl. The bowl is on the desk :)
  4. longxianchen Senior Member

    Thank you very much, everyone. Maybe all the structures a …… of(like a pair of, a bag of, a kilo of, a set of) are the same. Such as a bag of potatoes is on the ground.
  5. owlman5

    owlman5 Senior Member

    You're welcome.
    This makes perfect sense.
  6. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    English (American)
    I think ther's a distinction to be drawn: words referring to a quantity will ordinarily take the plural in cases like this, while words referring to a container will take the singular.

    A basket of oranges was on the table. :tick:
    A kilo of oranges were on the table. :tick:
  7. Barque Senior Member

    Do you think so? I'd expect "was".

    Try rewording it. There was a kilogram of oranges on the table. "Were" wouldn't work here.
  8. london calling Senior Member

    Quite.:) The noodles are on the desk in a bowl (thank heavens.:D).

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