A noun is a word that refers to a person, place, thing, event, substance or quality. Seems simple enough but nouns can also be very confusing. For example, some people have a tough time distinguishing countable nouns and uncountable nouns. Certain words in the English language seem countable but are actually uncountable nouns. Let’s look at seven of them:
♦ All medical equipment must be sterilised before use.
♦ The photographer arrived at the venue early to set up his equipment.
NOTE: As ‘equipment’ is uncountable, we cannot say ‘an equipment’ or ‘equipments’. To refer to a single item of equipment, we say a piece of equipment. The same applies to ‘furniture’ and ‘luggage’.
♦ He likes to collect antique furniture.
♦ We need to buy a few more pieces of furniture for the guest room.
♦ You should never leave your luggage unattended.
♦ Let’s drop our luggage off at the hotel and go sightseeing.
4 Accommodation (mainly UK)
♦ There’s a shortage of affordable accommodation in major cities like London.
♦ The cost includes flight, accommodation and meals.
NOTE: ‘accommodations’ (plural) is used in the US.
♦ The new programme received a lot of positive feedback from viewers.
♦ Please give us your feedback by completing this questionnaire.
♦ Scientific evidence shows a link between smoking and lung cancer.
♦ Two pieces of evidence incriminating him were found last week.
♦ They are conducting some fascinating research on animal languages.
♦ It was a useful piece of research.
Finally, in case you didn’t know, money is uncountable BUT dollars, pounds and other monetary units are countable. 🙂
Sponge ME, English Tuition (Singapore)