San
Lv 6
San asked in Society & CultureLanguages · 1 month ago

Which is correct?

He often forgets to close (a door / doors) wherever he goes.

Thanks!

4 Answers

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  • ?
    Lv 5
    1 month ago
    Favourite answer

    With all due respect to Ogre, both the single "door" and the plural "doors" can be used.  The difference between the two options is a matter of voice.

    Ogre is correct in that the usual, narrative voice that we all tend to use in conversation would always choose "doors", because it's logical to assume that "he" passes through many doors each day and due to his habit, more than one of those are left open - hence the plural form.

    BUT

    As Audrey has asserted, there is a literary or "poetic" voice that we generally don't use in conversation, in which the singular form "a door" is perfectly acceptable, and might be considered elegant.  Ex.  "She loved Botany dearly, and to the housekeeper's dismay cluttered the house with bouquets from the fields, always  absolved with a bright 'It ain't no sin to pick a flower' ".  Clearly, more than one flower is picked, but the singular form suffices.  Similarly, Ex.  "God loves a sinner", which is simply "God loves sinners" in a poetic voice.  So, if you're in the middle of a literary or poetic description, (or quoting a character who likes to speak that way) you could certainly say "He often forgets to close a door" even though, logically, that obviously results in multiple doors being left open.

  • Ben
    Lv 5
    1 month ago

    "doors" or "the door". "A door" does not work in this sentence, as it implies it's only a single door he is forgetting to close, which is at odds with "often" and "wherever he goes".

  • 1 month ago

    Plural “doors” fits best in this sentence.

    The article “a” means one door.  And because the context of the sentence is about a general habit of a person in many situations, talking about a single door doesn’t work.

  • Audrey
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Either one is fine!

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