molasses sg/pl - dialectal variation?

James Harbeck jharbeck at SYMPATICO.CA
Fri Apr 3 23:59:37 UTC 2009

I've always been used to "molasses" as a singular noun for a mass
object. Today I encountered, in a document written by an American
co-worker (most recently from the Bay Area, but before that Las Vegas
and Arkansas), consistent treatment of it as a plural, which I am not
accustomed to (e.g., "Blackstrap molasses are a favourite supplement
in health food circles because they contain hefty amounts of vitamins
and minerals" - the context of the usages makes it clear she was not
using the plural to mean "types of molasses"). I can find other
instances of this with a Google search, but I'm not sure if it's a
regional variation or not. Does anyone here know about this? Or,
failing that, which version are each of you used to -- singular or

James Harbeck.

The American Dialect Society -

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