Choose the correct verb in the following sentences. Correct answers are highlighted in blue.
1. There (is, are) an empty cup and a paper bag on the floor. Note: The subjects are cup and bag.
2. My sister as well as two of my brothers (lives, live) in Florida. Note: The subject is sister. As well as two of my brothers is simply a prepositional phrase, and prepositional phrases are never the subjects of sentences.
3. The professor, together with twenty-five students, (is, are) happy that the term was almost over.
4. My grandmother and grandfather (look, looks) alike.
5. Either my brothers or my younger sister (is, are) owed my thanks. Note: When subjects are joined by or or nor, the verb agrees with the nearest subject. The nearest subject here is the singular word sister.
6. One of her six children (run, runs) five miles every day.
7. Each of the students (spend, spends) six hours studying for classes every day of the week. Note: The subject of this sentence is Each, not of the students, and Each is singular.
8. Neither of the boys (is, are) willing to study during the weekends. Note: The subject of this sentence is Neither, and Neither is singular. Watch out for prepositional phrases (of the boys) that separate the subject from its verb.
9. As a result of the conflict, there (is, are) bloodshed and chaos. Note: The word there is never the subject of a sentence.
10. Do you think that the manager and our supervisor (understands, understand) the problem?
11. Neither my sister nor my brothers (is, are) planning to drive down from New York for my seventh marriage.
12. One of my shoes (is, are) missing.
13. Christopher or Laura (email, emails) me almost every day.
14. Maria's regular salary together with tips (are, is) just enough for her to survive.
15. Under my son's bed (was, were) three Rollingstone magazines. Note: Under my son's bed is a prepositional phrase, so bed is NOT the subject of the sentence. The subject of the sentence is magazines.
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