Michael K. Gottlieb
michael.gottlieb at YALE.EDU
Thu Jul 22 17:44:48 UTC 1999
On Thu, 22 Jul 1999, Beverly Flanigan wrote:
> More common are "a group of people are going..." or "a bunch of things were
> done"--and I too get funny looks from my prescriptivist students when I,
> increasingly a real speaker, speak thus(ly).
Speaking of plurals...
I have a coworker who consistently uses "persons" where I and others would
use "people" or "body," as in "anybody." At first I thought it was only
in her formal speech, but she uses it casually, as well. I have yet to
ask her about it, but I thought I'd get an informal poll, first to see if
it's as uncommon as I think it is.
"Those persons can choose from list A or B."
"Any persons who don't want to go early, don't have to."
"There are usually 9 persons to each class..."
Is "people" considered less formal or less good?
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