Subject-verb agreement is a primary concept in English grammar that refers to the necessity of ensuring that the verb in a sentence agrees with the subject. One of the common topics in subject-verb agreement is when to use “no one” as the subject of a sentence.
When you start a sentence with “no one,” you must use a singular verb form because this pronoun means “not a single person.” Therefore, the verb should match the singular noun “one” instead of the plural noun “people.”
For instance, consider the following sentences:
– No one knows what happened to the missing money.
– No one wants to attend a boring lecture.
In both examples, the use of the singular verbs “knows” and “wants” agrees with the singular subject “no one.”
However, sometimes people might get confused and use plural verbs with “no one.” For instance:
– No one were able to find the right solution to the problem.
– No one like to be criticized harshly for their mistakes.
Both of these sentences are incorrect because the verbs “were” and “like” are plural while “no one” is singular. Instead, the correct forms should be “was” and “likes.”
Another common mistake people make is when they use “nobody” interchangeably with “no one.” Although the two pronouns have similar meanings, “nobody” is often associated with a negative tone or situation, while “no one” is more neutral.
Consider the following examples:
– Nobody wants to hear the unpleasant truth. (negative)
– No one has ever climbed that mountain. (neutral)
So, in summary, when using “no one” as the subject of a sentence, always remember to use a singular verb form to ensure that the subject and verb agree. By doing so, you can avoid common errors and make your writing clearer and more effective.