Nouns and related verbs
The following has been sent to me for use in publicity and it seems wrong. A band is an 'is' and not an 'are', surely. And yet this seems more and more common nowadays, e.g.: The Philharmonic Orchestra are presenting their new season of concerts.
"The Artisans are an exciting new medieval and Renaissance band emerging from London. They have an interesting variety of well-researched programmes of music spanning four centuries from England, France, Spain and Italy. With exotic dance tunes to rousing chorus songs, their playing enchants all those who hear them."
You are correct, Jasper. If "The Artisans" is the name of the group, then "is" is the proper verb to use. I believe the confusion commonly happens when the noun represents a group of people. The writer often wants to refer to this entity in the plural and as a person, not as a single unit. It is not only the usage of the wrong verb, but also the pronoun. In your example, the band is refered to with they, their and them. They are the members of the band. The band itself, is a single entity. I find a bit of a problem with the first part of the last sentence as well.
The Artisans is an exciting new medieval and Renaissance band emerging from London. The group has an interesting variety of well-researched programmes of music spanning four centuries from England, France, Spain and Italy. From exotic dance tunes to rousing chorus songs, all who hear these players are enchanted.
|link comment||answered Jun 12 '11 at 01:38 Patty T Grammarly Fellow|
Patty T. is correct in saying that a band, orchestra--also a football or ice hockey or whatever--is a singular [mass, or group, or collective] noun and thus is is the correct form to use.
BUT...in her rewrite of your last sentence ["From exotic.....] she has unfortunately made another major blunder: a/the dangling modifier. "From exotic...chorus songs" is a phrase, not a clause [ie, no verb]. As such, it should modify [ie, describe] the immediately following noun/pronoun--"all" in this case. But "all" here means "all the people who hear the group's music, " whereas the descriptive, or modifying phrase immediately in front of it actually describes the group's repertoire, a word used nowhere in the sentence.
Thus, the phrase "From...songs" just "dangles" in front of the sentence, modifying nothing at all.
A dangling [or misplaced] modifier is a grammatical error. freshman comp level
|link comment||answered Jun 16 '11 at 15:49 firstname.lastname@example.org New member|
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