Cats running across the lawn contribute(s)

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I'm curious about how to conjugate a sentence such as the following:

Cats running across the lawn contribute(s) to the deterioration of the condition of said lawn.

I believe that the verb would be "contributes." Is this correct?
The reason I think this is that the subject is not merely "cats," but rather "cats running across the lawn."

Thank you for your input.
  • chfattouma

    Senior Member
    Tunisian Arabic
    I agree that the subject is 'Cats running across the lawn'. Here 'running across the lawn' is a reduced relative clause for 'that are running across the lawn'. This, however, does not make the subject singular. It is plural: 'cats'.
    The verb is to be conjugated 'contribute'.
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