Singular/plural - cattle

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Diddy, Oct 6, 2007.

  1. Diddy

    Diddy Senior Member

    Hi Forum!!!!

    I had just opened a thread asking for some plurarl/singular words, but I do not know what could happen, as now I can´t find it through my Control Panel, then I am now submitting again the words that were not answered before. These are:

    1. cattle, <...>

    Are those words singular or plural? Would you please write me an example to see how to use each word in singular and in plural sentences?
    Thanks in advance,
  2. mhp Senior Member

    American English
    The word cattle (reses) means a group of animals (or people in some cases). It is usually not used as the subject of the sentence, but if it is used that way, I’d say that it takes a plural verb. How would you use reses in Spanish? As far as I know it means ganado which has a singular form while reses has a plural from.


    PS. Moved from Spanish Forum.
  3. sdgraham

    sdgraham Senior Member

    Oregon, USA
    USA English

    "Cattle" can indeed be the subject (as in this sentence). The cattle just got into my lower pasture (they really did and I had to go haze them out and just got back to my computer).
  4. mhp Senior Member

    American English
    No, you did not miss anything. As far as I know, dictionaries, in general, do not list plural of regular nouns. At least in my dictionary, there is no mention of fathers being the plural of father, or premises being the plural of premise.
  5. Diddy

    Diddy Senior Member


    O.K. I clrearly understand that cattle is a collective noun, but I get always confused about the verb that have to be used, then it is a good way to say:

    The cattle has been drinking water from the river.


    All the placed answer have been of a great help for me to understand English better.
    Thanks to all
  6. panjandrum

    panjandrum Occasional Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Cattle is a collective noun, from the same origins as chattel - a collective noun meaning property that is still used as a non-collective noun meaning a possession.

    Originally cattle referred to animals of any kind held as property or reared for food, milk, skin, wool, etc.
    Now it is usually limited to bovine animals.

    The cattle have been drinking water from the river.

Share This Page