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"Ninguno de los niños necesita camisetas."

Translation:None of the kids needs T-shirts.

March 18, 2018

116 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Colette984040

I think that should be ' None of the children need T-shirts'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elizadeux

Both need and needs would be correct here. Here this is listed as one of the "Top Ten Grammar Myths"

http://www.onlinegrammar.com.au/top-10-grammar-myths-none-always-takes-a-singular-verb/


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tlock835

Ahh I was going to ask if that was proper English...not that it matters because we were translating to Spanish


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doctor_coleton

where I live 'need' is used I didn't even think 'needs' was an option


[deactivated user]

    Indeed. They are still marking that answer as wrong. Have reported again.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KyleFenorme

    None (and any) are always singular in formal English. Few write and almost almost no one soeaks that way, but it's true.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    There is no basis for that claim. "None" has been used for centuries with both singular and plural verbs. Have a look at the Usage Notes here.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EggyMom

    Whether 'none' and 'any' are singular or plural depends on what they are referring to.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MarionPrev

    yes that's right, the kids need, the kid needs


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GerryInnes

    I agree. Thats what I put and it was marked wrong


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/piguy3

    "need" is obviously fine; however, "needs" isn't wrong.

    Searching Google with quotes, here is the entirely of the relevant results:

    • I guess part of the problem is that none of the kids needs me so much anymore.
    • With the short cycling distances involved, none of the kids needs to have a triathlon bike.
    • Some moms sneak in a video during that rare 10 minutes when none of the kids needs anything.
    • A rare moment where none of the kids needs something…

    • We're not sure what the need is out here in Deer Creek in the suburbs but regardless, none of the kids need to feel uncertain.

    • Sure hope none of the kids need a bathroom call, because that means boots and pants back on and a walk across the yard to the building with lights and water.
    • None of the kids need counseling, and Crosland didn't feed the turtle in front of a whole class.

    4 vs. 3 for "needs" over "need"; of course the specific counts are but an anecdote; this is a ridiculously small sample. But it's reasonable evidence that "none of [plural group]" can be used with a singular verb in English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/antonmo

    if you use needs, should you not also use “a t-shirt” ?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    No, there's no problem with one child owning several T-shirts.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EllaMcC

    Quoted from the link below & paraphrased for brevity:

    As is nearly always the case, the answer is that both are fine and have been for a long time.

    Grammarians — and, stunningly, they are fairly quiet about the issue — pretty much agree on three basic facts:

    1) when none quantifies a singular or mass noun, only singular agreement is acceptable (ie: food) 2) when none quantifies a plural noun, both singular and plural agreements are acceptable (ie: t-shirt/s) 3) when none doesn’t quantify anything, both agreements are acceptable.

    So actually Duo should be accepting a rather large variety of singular/plural combinations here.

    For more: https://motivatedgrammar.wordpress.com/2009/01/08/none-is-none-are-grammar-according-to-clarkson/

    PS: Sorry to be replying to you Ryagon - I just got bored of reading the same argument over and over, so scrolled to the "comfy resting place" and didn't actually realize I'd replied to you until after posting.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Peggy277538

    You are right. "needs a t-shirt" "need t-shirts"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BobBeretta

    Looking at an ngram from Google books is interesting (still anecdotal, but with more voluminous data).

    https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=none+of+them+need%2Cnone+of+them+needs&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3

    In 2018, treating "none of them" as a plural noun phrase is still more than twice as common as singular. But historically, plural was the only way. Prior to 1870 there were no occurrences of singular usage, then singular usage started to creep in.

    Maybe that explains why some folks (like myself) think "none of the kids needs" is so wrong? Our body of reading just hasn't led us to accept the slow drift of grammar in common usage.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KenMammel

    I've never heard an educated English speaker say needs instead of need.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    Sorry.
    The subject of the sentence is "Ninguno" or "none". "None" is singular; so, the verb needs to be singular as well. Hence "needs".

    This has been the rule forever.
    If some online grammarist wants to change that rule because so many people ignore it, that is fine for them. But I will stick with the older rules.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cs1987

    That hasn't been the rule "forever" - conversely, "none" has been considered both singular and plural for around a thousand years, when the English language was very different to what it is today. The idea that "none" is only singular is a complete myth. See the links people have posted in this thread for more information on this.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BillTrost

    You're talking about English. There are no rules, there are only shared conventions. And in this case, either phrasing is somewhat conventional.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    The first four are simply incorrect and should be "none of the kids need."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Michael, there is no basis for your claim.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    There is no basis for the original claim. Just because they were found somewhere doesn't make them correct.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    Ni + uno = ninguno

    https://es.thefreedictionary.com/ninguno

    Spanish is much clearer than English in this.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Either form is pretty fine.

    If using a certain form doesn't make it correct, what does?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HeatherGilding

    None of the children need t-shirts. In English, this noun is plural so the verb shouldn't have an s.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elizadeux

    According to my grammar book Practical English Usage, "When we use none of with a plural noun or pronoun, the verb can be singular (a little more formal) or plural (a little more informal).


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EGHQNr1A

    Yes because the subject of the sentence is "none." People get confused and think that "children" is the subject, so they say "need"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HeatherGilding

    Both the words none and children are plural in this sentence. None is plural if it means not any like it does in this case.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HeatherGilding

    The word should be "need." That is the correct grammar.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/piguy3

    Both singular and plural are used in published English texts: http://bit.ly/2tx6A66


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elizadeux

    I agree that both are correct and so does my English grammar book!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DrLawrence

    "None" essentially means "not one". "None" is the subject and is singular. "Needs" is correct


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ralphonz

    Why "necesita" rather than "necesitan"? Isn't it [they] the children who need t-shirts, not he/she the children???


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    No, the verb agrees with the subject, which is ninguno. Ninguno is singular in Spanish, so you must use necesita.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rollermama

    Interesting that niños is plural but necesita is singular. I assume because none is singlar (?). Can someone elaborate?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Yes, ninguno is the head noun here, and the head noun determines the conjugation. "Los niños" is a possession of the head noun, which doesn't influence the plurality.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DABurnside

    Cut and pasted from https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/none-or-none-are “None” can be singular or plural. Try to decide whether it means “not one”—in which case it’s singular—or “not any”—in which case it’s plural. And If you aren’t sure, “none is” is safer.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamalZakar1

    Her pronunciation is ninguna, not ninguno, sheis sabotaging our lingot capture!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamalZakar1
    • fast & slow speed differ!

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    You should also use your knowledge about Spanish and realise that ninguna wouldn't make sense here referring to niños.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DLClouse88

    Looking at the comments and quotes above tells me that people are divided on "none" being grammatically singular or plural. If you view "none" as a stand in for "no one" or "not one", I can see how that makes sense. But as for me, "none" still sounds plural.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/linda950913

    This translation should be: None of the kids needs a t-shirt. None = not one, so "needs" Singular subject, singulat verb, and singular object. Duolingo often has problems with this type of construction.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    It's discussed above. None can be singular or plural in English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daantje294638

    None of the kids need Tshirts I guess in stead of needs


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KenMammel

    I caught that too. (need not needs) I think that's the type of error a (1st language) Spanish speaker would make.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    There is no error made here.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VNivGSgf

    Niños could also be translated as boys.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BillTrost

    Verdad. ¿Lo has comunicado?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VNivGSgf

    Needs is correct, not need, since none means 'not one'. Thus, it's singular in English


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    None can be either singular or plural in English. You can find it being used either way in English literature for hundreds of years.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    Yes, and a child can be either male or female. But in any given case it is either one or the other. "None of them are" = plural. "None of it is" = singular.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    This is like a person running a red light saying to the cop, But stop lights can be either red or green! Yes, they can--but they are not interchangeable. None can be either singular or plural, but there are times when it is properly one, and times when it is properly the other.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    The pronoun "none" can be used with both singular and plural verbs. Have a look at the Usage Notes here.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArthurTinaglia

    I put, "Not any of the children need T-shirts." What is wrong with that? Aren't kids the same a children? Isn't "not any" the same as "none"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    "Not any" sounds kind of odd, you'd mostly say "none". But feel free to report it.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/joe830172

    Well maybe the Spanish phrase sounds normal, but in English i would think "none of the kids need tshirts" or "the kids don't need tshirts" sounds better.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jo.Pickering

    Definitive answer to 'need' or 'needs'! I have Fowler's Modern English Usage in front of me. It says, and I quote...

    "It is a mistake to suppose that the pronoun is singular only and must at all costs be followed by singular verbs etc.; the OECD explicitly states that the plural construction is commoner".

    I would go so far as to say that no native speaker (unless a grammar pedant) would ever say "None of the kids needs T-shirts". Never. Not ever. Not anywhere. Ever.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    None = not one

    Not one need? Not one needs. I prefer the second one--muchísimas gracias!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/skepticalways

    Well, I wouldn't say "never," nor would I say "commoner" for "more common," but you are free to do so. Is that book a British source, perhaps? Idiomatic usage can be intriguingly different, certainly.

    But back to the topic. I believe that if you were taught "none = not one = no one," you would choose the singular verb.

    "Not one person gets by me without a ticket!"

    "No one goes into that section of town without risk."

    "Out of all of the applicants, none is qualified to do the work, not one!"

    "With a family of twelve, I am astonished that NONE needs a t-shirt!"

    "But ALL need shoes before school starts!" (plural Subj.)

    Yet, usage changes with commonality, so now it's said that the "subject" is seen to be a "phrase" including the plural object of a preposition, like "None of them NEED a t-shirt" to lend credibility to using a plural verb - huh! - I find that to be lazy logic, but ... Whatever!

    If both sing. & plural verbs are accepted, so be it!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    The subject is NONE and the verb is NEED, not NEEDS. See Jo Pickering's reference to Fowler's above.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Michael, the subject here is "none", and it can take both singular and plural verbs, depending on context and emphasis. Have a look at the OED entry for "none".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    Yes, and in this context it is plural. None of them are. None of it is. "None of the children are hungry." "None of the article is funny." It can take both, but one or the other is correct in each case.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    This isn't a new thing. None has been used as both singular and plural for hundreds of years. Some people have decided one was right and have tried to make the other wrong.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    You just described how languages develop. :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IdmaHFR6

    What’s the difference between ningun and ninguno?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    When "ninguno" is placed before a singular masculine noun, it must change to "ningún".

    https://www.lawlessspanish.com/grammar/adjectives/negative-adjective/


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tony546136

    This should.be Necesitan since we are talking about them or they - plural.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Tony, that wouldn't work. Ninguno is the subject of the Spanish sentence, and ninguno is always singular.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    None is plural in this case. You would say "None of the children need T-shirts, do they?" not "None of the children needs T-shirts, does he?"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    Sorry.
    That is not actually true.
    In English grammar, none can be either singular or plural.
    It would be nice if it had to be one or the other. But grammarians have said since both are used routinely, both/either one is correct.

    https://data.grammarbook.com/blog/singular-vs-plural/none-were-vs-none-was/


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    It can be either, but it has to be one or the other in each given case. It says to look at the noun after "of" and if it is plural, then none is plural. "Children" is plural, so none is plural in the sentence in question. If the word were "book" then it would be singular. As in "None of the book is in English." Or something like "None of it is funny."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    In English, yes, but in Spanish it is always singular.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    I keep learning every rule of grammar has its exception.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    It also has people who break it.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    You won't hear a Spanish speaker using a singular word as if it's plural.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dluzer
    • 1184

    That's not what the article says. It says:

    "If the object of the preposition is plural, there is more leeway. Most of the time, but not always, you will want to use a plural verb. Examples: None of the pie was eaten. None of the children were hungry. BUT None (as in, “not a single one”) of the children was hungry is not incorrect."

    Assuming the article is correct. As a native English speaker I think I've heard it both ways but certainly using the plural verb with a plural prepositional object is more common.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael263552

    Yes, sometimes it's one and sometimes the other, but not willy-nilly. In each case, one or the other is correct depending on the circumstance. You wouldn't say "none of it are" and you shouldn't say "none of them is."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doctor_coleton

    shouldn't it be 'necesitan'?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    No, the subject (ninguno) is singular.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ReubenBrig1

    It should be ' None of the kids need t-shirts


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    If you have read the comments, you know that should be accepted.

    But "needs" is also a grammatical answer in English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Travis909577

    Why not "necesitan?"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    Ninguno is singular. You must use a singular verb, necesita.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marianne613335

    If both "need" and "needs" are correct, then both options should be made available... I would never ever have chosen needs myself.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GeorgiaRae16

    Should it not be "Los niños necesitAN" instead of "Los niños necesitA" Since Niños is plural?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    No, the subject is ninguno, so it's necesita. The prepositional phrase de los niños doesn't change that.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/barrykimmitt

    Why is this not "necesitan"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DarkThor00

    Why isn't it "necesitan" if niños is plural?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dluzer
    • 1184

    I know sometimes duo doesn't always show previous discussions, but this exact question has already been asked and answered several times in this thread so just look over the thread


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GillianBra10

    I put none of these children need t shirts which should also be correct.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JaukQ

    Why isn't is 'necesitan'? Surely, it's plural (los ninos), 'they' ?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JaukQ

    Surely the answer should be necesitan' (plural) not 'necesita' as the subject is more than one child?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hope151417

    Im confused when to ise ningunos and ninguno


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Will61871

    Why is this not necesitan as it is plural.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/manel224731

    When we can put ninguna or ninguno , ningunas , ningunos ? Please someone tell me who?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichaelJay122020

    I agree with everybody who recognizes that the subject is singular (ie: ninguno = not one) in this case. This is confirmed by the conjugation of the verb (necesita) which is 3rd. person singular (s/he needs, not they need). Perhaps this is a quirk of English where it is acceptable to say: Not one of the kids needs (or need) T-shirts, but it appears to me that Spanish is clear about this.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Terri501702

    Children should be accepted. Kids are young goats


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    Children should already be accepted, but kids isn't wrong.

    The word kids is used every day by native speakers and 99% of the time it refers to children. No native speaker would assume this is about goats.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/susu581980

    The subject is "none" which is singular so it should be "need" although you would never use it without the qualifying phrase.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

    See above. None can be singular or plural in English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    If you have a singular 3rd-person subject, the correct conjugation is "needs". He/she/it needs something.

    "None" can be singular or plural, depending on your gusto.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BillTrost

    Eso me gusta. ;-)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    I wanted to smack your fingers for writing lo first, but it seems like you caught that. Good job. :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    I understand that the rules of English are vague on this, but logic can be helpful here.

    None of discrete countable plural nouns is "not one" to my mind.
    Not one is singular--a singular verb should be used.

    While none when applied to mass nouns or uncountable plural nouns can be "not any".
    When none means "not any" then a plural verb could be used.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Bruce, that's what you'd usually expect, especially if you assume that "none" means "not one", but languages don't always follow a certain logic.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

    I prefer my way. If it can be either a plural or a singular verb every single time, I'm breaking no rules.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Bruce, I need to apologise here. I didn't read your comment thoroughly enough and missed some phrases like "to my mind" and "or uncountable plural nouns". I was under the assumption you were trying to establish a wrong rule.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BrendaQ3

    In English (UK) definitely should be need T shirts


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

    Even the UK hyphenates T-shirts.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/donna.scha

    Looking at the examples given, Need singular suggests a need occurring at a distinct point of time while needs plural suggests something a bit more continuous. Given they are talking about kids who grow fast the sentence is likely to hold true for a short period of time so I would err towards use of need.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Linda_from_NJ

    When the need or needs occur, it has nothing to do with time. You are on the wrong track, donna.scha.

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