English : None

Which of the following sentences is correct?

None of them is any good.


None of them are any good.

Both are acceptable. There was a time, however, when it was recommended that the word none be followed by a singular verb. But times have changed. It is now possible to use either a singular or a plural verb when none refers to a countable noun.

For example it is possible to say:

• None of the telephones is/are working.

• None of the students have/has turned up.

• None of the children is/are happy.

People who are extremely fond of grammar insist, even today, that a singular and not a plural verb should follow none.

COURTESY : The Hindu (The National News-Paper) - India

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