There's a number of/There are a number of

  • Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    wayoutwest888. What do you think? If you decide which one you think is correct and tell us why you think that, we can either confirm that you have understood the grammatical point or can explain why you have not.
     
    wayoutwest888. What do you think? If you decide which one you think is correct and tell us why you think that, we can either confirm that you have understood the grammatical point or can explain why you have not.
    I'd use there are a number of...

    Because after all whatever follows "a number of" must be plural.
     
    We need context. Did you read a sentence somewhere using one of these? If so, please give us the full sentence as well as some context and tell us the source. If it's something you want to write, please spell out how you want to use the phrase.
    "There are a number of possible reasons." is the sentence I read on an English book on Speaking Training.

    "There's a number of problems but two are pressing." is the sentence from the link
    http://www.fixya.com/cars/t4922191-1990_tracker_theres_a_number_of_problems

    Well it's hard for me to decide which is right. Thank you!!!
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I'd use there are a number of...

    Because after all whatever follows "a number of" must be plural.
    It doesn't really matter what follows, "a number of <whatever>" is inherently plural.

    What you have found is the very common use of "there's" + plural rather than "there're" + plural. This is often used even by those who would never dream of saying "There is a number of...".
    It happens because it is much easier to articulate "There's a..." than "There're a...".

    There's lots of other threads about this topic :)
    use of [ there's ] to introduce a plural noun
     
    Last edited:
    It doesn't really matter what follows, "a number of <whatever>" is inherently plural.

    What you have found is the very common use of "there's" + plural rather than "there're" + plural. This is often used even by those who would never dream of saying "There is a number of...".
    It happens because it is much easier to articulate "There's a..." than "There're a...".

    There's lots of other threads about this topic :)
    use of [ there's ] to introduce a plural noun
    I've checked out those threads. They're very helpful indeed. Thank you!!!
     
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