singular debris?

Pafra & Scott Catledge scplc at GS.VERIO.NET
Tue Jul 20 23:59:41 UTC 1999

Listen to your own language: much debris/many debris; less debris/fewer
debris; that debris and the other/that debris and the other one.  The noun
"debris" is clearly a mass noun.
----- Original Message -----
From: Dennis R. Preston <preston at PILOT.MSU.EDU>
Sent: Tuesday, July 20, 1999 2:30 PM
Subject: Re: singular debris?

> I'm with Arnold on this one. Mass noun it has always been for me (hence,
> singular-appearing in agreement).
> dInIs (proud to be with the srtandard-bearers for once)
> >barbara need asks when DEBRIS became singular.  i've used
> >it all my life as a mass noun, hence as singular in its
> >agreement pattern.  and i don't recall ever having heard/seen
> >it used as a plural count noun; LOTS OF DEBRIS WERE SCATTERED
> >ON THE BEACH makes me break out all over in asterisks, in fact.
> >
> >arnold (zwicky at, in urbana, illinois,
> >  for another week)

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