jewelry in plural?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Xeniaxyz, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. Xeniaxyz

    Xeniaxyz Member

    Sweden, swedish
    Can Jewelry take plural?
    If I refer to a person making rings, necklaces, etc - would one say she makes nice jewelry or nice jewelries?
    And what is the difference between Jewelry and jewellry?

    thanks in advance to all of you out there sharing your knowledge!
  2. Wondercow Member

    Toronto, Canada
    English - Canadian
    Jewellery is used for both the singular and plural of the noun:

    I bought a nice piece of jewellery today.
    I bought my wife four pieces of jewellery today.

    As for jewelry vs. jewellery, the former is AE while the latter is BE (and is used in many Commonwealth nations).
  3. Ann O'Rack Senior Member

    UK English
    The difference in spelling is US vs UK English, though your UK version is not correct - see Wondercow's spelling for the UK version.

    When deciding the number of a verb to use, "jewellery/jewelry" always takes the singular: "your jewelry goes well with your dress" (not "go").
  4. SwissPete

    SwissPete Senior Member

    94044 USA
    Français (CH), AE (California)
    But jewelry must have a plural!

    Wouldn't you say / write, for instance: "There are similarities between American Indian and Mayan jewelries"?

    Please note: Example taken out of the blue...
  5. sdgraham

    sdgraham Senior Member

    Oregon, USA
    USA English
    Grammatically, I would not.
  6. Wondercow Member

    Toronto, Canada
    English - Canadian
    None of my dictionaries (Oxford Concise, New Oxford American, American Heritage, M-W Online) give a plural for jewelry/jewellery.

    Thank you to Ann O'Rack for noticing the spelling error in jewellery that I missed.
  7. Xeniaxyz

    Xeniaxyz Member

    Sweden, swedish
    Thank you so much - all of you - for explaining it!

    Enjoy the day!

    ps. I must say that I really love this forum and all that take part in helping others! You are doing a great job!
  8. MJSinLondon Senior Member

    English - UK (London)
  9. fdk47 Senior Member

    I've used Google Ngram for "jewelries" and got many results, mainly by authors with non-native-English-speaking sounding names, but some with names that sound like they can be native English speakers.

    How strange does "jewelries" sound to native speakers?

    Is it one of those informal, non-grammatical words some native speakers use such as "anyways"?
    Or, is it something you've never heard of anyone say in real life and sound totally ungrammatical and really strange?

    Thank you.
  10. JustKate

    JustKate Moderate Mod

    Jewelries sounds positively weird to native speakers. Formal or informal, it just isn't ever used, as far as I know (unlike anyways, which is pretty common around here :)). I have never heard it.
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2014
  11. Egmont Senior Member

    Massachusetts, U.S.
    English - U.S.
    Jewelry is considered an uncountable noun or mass noun, like "butter," "software," or "sand." It has no plural. The singular refers to any amount of it. If you want to specify a quantity, you must specify a unit: "three pieces of jewelry," "500 grams of butter," "three software packages" or "five cubic meters of sand."

    A search on WRF or on the Web for the phrase "uncountable noun" will tell you more than you want to know about them.
  12. Wordsmyth

    Wordsmyth Senior Member

    Location: Mostly SW France
    Native language: English (BrE)
    Both "jewelries/jewelleries" and "anyways" sound strange to my BrE ear. The difference is that the first sounds totally wrong, whereas the second just sounds totally American.:D

  13. fdk47 Senior Member

    Thank you!

Share This Page