Many a person finds it difficult to properly use the construction, ‘many a…..’ in a sentence without committing a grammatical error.
In this very brief and enlightening article, I am going to show readers how to properly use this often-confusing phrase. So if you are ready then let us delve straight into business.
Many a can be defined as each of a large indefinite number of something. It is an adjective and always moves with nouns. The construction ‘Many a’ can also change its form to ‘Many an…’ if a vowel comes after it.
‘Many a’ must always be followed by a singular noun.
On no account must you use a plural noun after Many a. For example you can clearly see from the beginning of the article how I used Many a. I started by saying “Many a person” instead of “Many a persons or people”. It would have been grammatically wrong for me to have used the latter.
Always use a singular verb with Many a
Since Many a must be followed by a singular noun, the main verb that comes after its singular noun must also be singular so we can have subject verb agreement. Never use a plural verb with the construction. Take a look again at my first sentence of this article: ‘Many a person finds it difficult to…….’
I hope that you have noticed that the verb ‘finds’ in the construction is a singular verb? This is how to go about it all the time.
The interesting thing about this construction is the fact that although it is notionally a plural it should be always used as a singular.
The article ‘a’ can change to ‘an’
The construction Many a, can also transform to Many an when a vowel comes after it. For example: “Many an engineer knows how to use this device’
In the above sentence, we had to substitute the article ‘a’ for ‘an’ because the noun coming after the construction began with a vowel.
Let us take a look at some more correct examples of Many a and Many an in sentences:
- Many a journalist is not afraid of speaking publicly.
- Many a student finds it difficult using this construction.
- I don’t know why many an actor prefers to move to Beverly Hills.
- Many a man will do everything to protect his house.
- Many a woman dreams of getting married and starting a family.
- Many an expert says that exercise and water are the best medicines for the body.
- Many a beggar has no choice.
- For many a day it rained heavily such that we could barely go out.
- Many a celebrity today did not graduate high school.
- Many an English teacher speaks very good English.
- Many an Englishman supports Manchester United FC.
- Many a teacher likes a student who studies very hard.
- Many a politician tells lies.