[1] I ate

**a 1/4 nectarine**.

[2] I ate

**0.25 nectarines**.

Is this always applicable?

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[1] I ate

[2] I ate

Is this always applicable?

1. I ate a quarter of a nectarine.

2. I ate twenty-five tenths of a nectarine.

I think I know what you mean, but I don't think it works the way you are suggesting. If you said, "I ate 2.25 (two and a quarter) nectarines" that would make more sense.

2. I ate twenty-five~~tenths~~hundredths of a nectarine.

Math... never my strong suit

So you're saying you don't express it with 0.25 or 1/4, Oeco?

1. I ate a quarter of a nectarine.

2. I ate twenty-five tenths of a nectarine.

I think I know what you mean, but I don't think it works the way you are suggesting. If you said, "I ate 2.25 (two and a quarter) nectarines" that would make more sense.

How to read this number 2/211

If I saw 0.25, I would say '(nought/oh/zero) point two five' (rather than twenty-five hundredths). And yes, we'd use the plural with decimals -

Having said that, I think in an natural situation about consumption, I would only say 'a quarter'.

Wow, I love these linguistic discoveries.And yes, we'd use the plural with decimals -point two five nectarines unless I saypoint two five of a nectarine.

Maybe I should have used different numbers. Yes, for 1/4 or 0.25, we'd be most likely say a quarter instead.

But for something like 3/5 or 0.6, and particularly in mathematical calculation, you would use just the fraction or the decimal number.

Decimals with plurals are used at least by someone or some people ... Would it be one of the AE-BE differences?

[3] They found a 3/5 apple left on the plate. Someone ate 30% of it later. How much is left now?

[4] They found 0.6 apples (a 0.6 apple) on the plate. Someone ate 30% of them (it) left now?

But for something like 3/5 or 0.6, and particularly in mathematical calculation, you would use just the fraction or the decimal number.

Decimals with plurals are used at least by someone or some people ... Would it be one of the AE-BE differences?

[3] They found a 3/5 apple left on the plate. Someone ate 30% of it later. How much is left now?

[4] They found 0.6 apples (a 0.6 apple) on the plate. Someone ate 30% of them (it) left now?

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The exception is when you have maths problem sums, when things are not expected to sound natural anyway!

I can imagine decimals when you express weights, lengths, volumes involving some unit of measurement,

I would say

0.5 apple (half an apple, five tenths of an apple)

0.9 apple

1.1 apples

1.5 apples

In other words, anything greater than one can be taken as plural, as well as zero and possibly negative numbers. But in many cases the plural might be used with decimals smaller than 1; I have no strong objection to "0.5 meters".

It looks as though it's not a AE-BE difference, but it could be a conversation-not-conversation one.With a few exceptions, plurals of spelled-out units are formed conventionally. Use the singular form with numbers less than or equal to 1, and use the plural form with numbers greater than 1. (In spoken English, however, decimal numbers take the plural form even if they are less than 1, e.g. "a quarter second" but "zero point two five seconds.")

0.5 inches

0.6 apples

Now that Keith has put it 0.73 meters (metres) I think the plural would be called for in AmE as well. We would say "73 one hundreths of

It is usually "a quarter of".

Then, if it is about an electric current, or financial assets, either one is used.

"One quarter of the money goes towards education".

"25% of the money goes...."

"One fourth of the money goes...."

This results in 1 metre but 1.0 metres. The former is not a decimal, but simply an integer. They would be abbreviated as 1 m and 1.0 m, respectively.decimals (whether more or less than 1) are followed by a plural noun.all

0.73 metres(if you must)

0.5 inches

0.6 apples

Oh, so you say "1.0 metreThis results in 1 metre but 1.0 metres. The former is not a decimal, but simply an integer. They would be abbreviated as 1 m and 1.0 m, respectively.

A: "Measure those rods and call out the lengths; I'll write them down."

B(i): "One point oh seven metres (1.07)... one point one, one metres (1.11)... point nine, seven metres (0.97) and one point zero metres." - if you are using decimal points, you are being accurate and use the plural.

B(ii): "One point oh seven metres (1.07)... [...] and one metre exactly" - if you abandon the decimal system, it is in the singular.

B(iii)."One and a quarter inch... seven-eighths of an inch... half an inch, one inch." The plural is optional with inches for more than one; the singular is for one and less than one." target="WRdict">... one and three-eighths inch... seven-eighths of an inch... half an inch, one inch." The plural is optional with inches for more than one; the singular is for one and less than one.

B(i): "One point oh seven metres (1.07)... one point one, one metres (1.11)... point nine, seven metres (0.97) and one point zero metres." - if you are using decimal points, you are being accurate and use the plural.

B(ii): "One point oh seven metres (1.07)... [...] and one metre exactly" - if you abandon the decimal system, it is in the singular.

B(iii)."One and a quarter inch... seven-eighths of an inch... half an inch, one inch." The plural is optional with inches for more than one; the singular is for one and less than one." target="WRdict">... one and three-eighths inch... seven-eighths of an inch... half an inch, one inch." The plural is optional with inches for more than one; the singular is for one and less than one.

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Sorry, I was editing - the is optional.

I'm very sorry Inew here I tried to delete my last post my apologies no offence meant

Steve

Steve

A: "I'm going to get 30 metre of twin-core cable. While I'm gone, take two inch off that plank."

B: "But that'll make it less than six foot!"

A: "It's OK, as long as it's more than 1.8 metre."

A: "We need new curtains. How big's the window?"

B: "Ninety-six inch."

A: "Exactly?"

B: "Just a minute, [measures] Oh! look at that! One hundred and eight inches! It must have grown!"

I think it comes from spending time with tradesmen, my father who was an engineer and a friend who was a woodwork teacher. They were all used to using measurements as adjectives - a two inch nail; a 20 centimetre wide board, etc.

No offence but your a North country inhabitant I think

I'm Gloucestershire borne Gloucestershire bred strong in the arm thick in the head and we "talked plurals down these parts" (is that English? I havent been in the UK for 20 years) English as a foreign tongue must be impossible

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decimals (whether more or less than 1) are followed by a plural noun.all

0.73 metres(if you must)

0.5 inches

0.6 apples

This results in 1 metre but 1.0 metres. The former is not a decimal, but simply an integer. They would be abbreviated as 1 m and 1.0 m, respectively.

It's because the decimal point i used. The format is ABC.WXYZ unitOh, so you say "1.0 metres[or, meters]"! I've never known that. You don't say "1.0 metre [or, meter]," do you?

Some of the discussion/confusion is from examples where things like apples and melons are used - these are everyday words, rather than units, so they are not always treated the same way. I personally have never said or heard (outside this kind of language discussion ) 0.6 apple(s) or 0.6 of an apple etc.

I wouldn't. I would use the plural of the unit. The way I understand the rule is that if the number is not exactly one, you do not use the singular, at least when expressing the number with a digit.Oh, so you say "1.0 metres[or, meters]"! I've never known that. You don't say "1.0 metre [or, meter]," do you?

Another way of thinking about why you use plurals with any number that is not exactly one is to remember that "1.0" is a shorthand notation for "one and zero tenths". While we might generally read it as "one point zero", the "point zero" portion still refers to "tenths" which is plural in a case like this (as are hundredths, thousandths, etc.). Likewise, when one speaks of 0.8 of something, they are talking about "eight tenths" of that thing.

Saying all of the above means I would be remiss if I did not point out that "1", "1.", and "1.0" can mean very different things depending on the context. The differences between the meanings are a result of a property called significant figures (more reading on these at: http://www.usca.edu/chemistry/genchem/sigfig.htm). This idea is mostly of use in more technical fields where the precision of measurements is important.

But in short, when you say there is 1.0 of something, you're not saying that there's exactly one of that thing, you're saying that there is anywhere between 0.95 and 1.05 of that thing.