Treat either and neither as singular. For example:|
Either and Neither Are SingularEither and neither are singular concepts. They can be thought of as the opposite of the word both.
The word either can be an adjective or a pronoun. It means one or the other of two people or things. Either is singular.
The word neither can also be an adjective or a pronoun. It means not the one nor the other of two people or things; i.e., not either. Neither is also singular.
Singular Verb with Singular ElementsIf the pairings either/or (often the either is omitted) or neither/nor form part of the subject of a verb and both elements are singular, then the verb must be singular too. For example:
Plural Verb with a Plural ElementIf the pairings either/or (often the either is omitted) or neither/nor form part of the subject of a verb and at least one of the elements is plural, then the verb must be plural too. For example:
Proximity RuleNot all grammar conventions agree with the ruling above. In fact, there is notable leniency on whether to use a plural or singular verb when one of the elements is plural. Under the proximity rule, the verb is governed by the element nearest to it.
( under the proximity rule – cake governs is because it is the nearest element.)
( under the proximity rule – ice-cream governs was because it is the nearest element.)
The elements are the words which follow either, or, neither or nor. (The elements are in bold in the first example below:
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Sometimes, it may sound wrong to use the singular form of the verb. Be confident and, if both elements are singular, use the singular form.