Here Is or Here Are? Your Easy Guide to Proper Usage

Marcus Froland

Ever found yourself typing a message or crafting an email and suddenly stopping dead in your tracks? That moment when you’re not sure if it’s “Here is” or “Here are”. You’re not alone. This tiny hiccup can throw off even the most confident English speakers and writers. It seems simple, but it’s tricky enough to make us second-guess what we know about English grammar.

The truth is, mastering this aspect of grammar can make your sentences sound more polished and professional. And who doesn’t want that? But here’s the thing: there’s a straightforward way to figure it out, a guideline so easy that you’ll wonder why it ever puzzled you in the first place. But before we reveal this golden rule, let’s take a closer look at why it matters.

Choosing between “Here is” and “Here are” depends on the noun that follows. Use “Here is” before a singular noun, like “Here is a book.” For a plural noun, switch to “Here are,” as in “Here are the books.” This rule keeps your sentences clear and grammatically correct. In spoken English, people might not always follow this rule strictly, but for writing, it’s important to match “is” or “are” with the number of items you’re talking about. Remember, it’s all about the noun that comes after.

Understanding the Basics of “Here Is” and “Here Are”

The expressions “here is” and “here are” involve a locative adverb “here” and a conjugation of the verb “to be,” reflecting a sentence structure where the actual subject follows the verb. Proper usage demands maintaining subject-verb agreement, with “here is” preceding singular nouns, and “here are” used with plural nouns. The trend of usage over the past 200 years shows “here is” being more prevalent, likely due to the commonality of referring to single items.

Subject-verb agreement is an essential aspect of the Basics of English grammar, ensuring sentences make sense and convey the intended meaning. To gain a deeper understanding, let’s take a closer look at the relationship between subject-verb agreement and the differences between singular and plural nouns.

“Here is” should always precede a singular noun, while “here are” should be used with plural nouns.

Locative adverbs help to indicate a specific location, emphasizing a noun’s presence in a certain place. In the case of “here is” and “here are,” the locative adverb “here” plays a crucial role in setting the context for the sentence. This brings us to the importance of using the correct form of the verb “to be” (is/are) when conjugating with singular and plural nouns.

  1. Singular nouns: Use “Here is” when addressing individual or unique items. For example, “Here is the book you requested.”
  2. Plural nouns: Use “Here are” when referring to multiple items. For instance, “Here are the cookies Mom baked.”
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Sentence Structure Singular or Plural Example
“Here is” + Noun Singular Here is the pen you lent me.
“Here are” + Noun Plural Here are the concert tickets we won.

By differentiating between singular and plural nouns and ensuring proper subject-verb agreement, you can confidently use “here is” and “here are” in your daily communication. Following these simple guidelines will not only enhance your grammar but also reflect the accuracy and professionalism in your speech and writing.

Finding the Right Conjugation for “To Be” After “Here”

Understanding the correct conjugation of “to be” after “here” is crucial for achieving proper subject-verb agreement in English grammar. This section will discuss the singular rule for using “here is,” the appropriate use of “here are” with plural nouns, and how to distinguish between countable and uncountable nouns.

The Singular Rule: When to Use “Here Is”

When referring to a single item, or when the noun following “here” is singular, use “here is.” For instance:

Here is the pen you ordered.

Note that this rule also applies when the noun is part of a collective term, like:

Here is your box of matches.

In this example, the noun “box” is singular, even though it represents a collection of matches.

Embracing Plurality: The Correct Use of “Here Are”

When discussing multiple items or objects, ensure that the plural form of the noun is used after “here are.” Correct usage involves pairing “here are” with plural nouns. Here’s an example:

Here are the things you ordered online.

Distinguishing Between Countable and Uncountable Nouns

Understanding the difference between countable and uncountable nouns is essential for maintaining subject-verb agreement in English grammar. Uncountable nouns lack a plural form, and therefore require the use of “here is” due to their singular nature. Countable nouns, on the other hand, follow regular pluralization rules and pair with “here are.”

Example of an uncountable noun:

Here is the information you asked for.

In this case, the noun “information” is uncountable and requires “here is..”

Countable Nouns Uncountable Nouns
books information
shoes water
apples rice

Maintaining subject-verb agreement with “here is” and “here are” is crucial for clear communication and grammatical correctness. Always be aware of the singular or plural form of the noun in question and whether the noun is countable or uncountable to ensure proper usage.

Common Errors and How to Avoid Them

Recognizing and avoiding common grammatical errors can significantly improve your writing skills and make your message more effective. This section will discuss some of the most frequent mistakes made with here is and here are, and provide tips on how to prevent these errors.

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Misuse of singular and plural forms is a prevalent mistake among English learners and native speakers alike. Nouns that can function as either singular or plural, depending on context, such as “couple” and “rest,” often lead to confusion. The following examples will help you better understand when to use here are in such instances:

  1. For situations where “rest” is followed by a plural noun, use “here are”: Here are the rest of your things.
  2. When using “couple” in reference to multiple items, it should be followed by “here are”: Here are a couple of items I found interesting.

Another common error involves not rephrasing sentences for clarity. For example, a sentence like “Here is the keys” is incorrect due to the plural noun “keys.” Rephrasing the sentence helps identify the subject and ensure proper agreement between the subject and verb, as in “The keys are here.”

Remember, always ensure proper subject-verb agreement in your sentences and be mindful of the singular or plural nature of the nouns you use.

To further improve your writing skills and avoid grammar mistakes, try the following tips:

  • Read more: The more you read, the more you’ll become familiar with correct grammar usage in various contexts.
  • Proofread your work: A second glance can help you catch grammatical mistakes and inconsistencies in your writing.
  • Consult grammar resources: Make use of comprehensive grammar guides or websites to enhance your understanding of grammatical rules.

Following these practices and maintaining awareness of common grammatical errors will help you avoid mistakes and improve your writing skills over time.

Advanced Tips: Navigating Tricky Grammar Situations

Mastering the correct usage of “here is” and “here are” can be complex in some cases. This section introduces advanced grammar tips to help you navigate tricky situations with grouped singular nouns, words like “couple” and “family,” and using “rest” in sentences.

Grouped Singularity: When Nouns Together Take a Plural Verb

There are instances where singular nouns are grouped together, taking a plural verb. In these cases, compound subjects are formed by connecting singular nouns using the conjunction and, which requires the verb to be plural. For example:

Here are the book and the stapler.

Although “book” and “stapler” are singular nouns, the conjunction “and” necessitates the use of a plural verb form, “are” in this case.

Contextual Singular or Plural Usage: Words Like “Couple” and “Family”

Some words, such as “couple” or “family,” can be considered either singular or plural based on the context they are used. For example:

  • Here is the couple who were walking. In this sentence, “couple” refers to two people as a single entity; thus, it takes a singular verb.
  • Here are a couple of books. In contrast, the word “couple” indicates a plural quantity in this context, so a plural verb is used.
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Similar rules apply to collective nouns like “family,” “government,” and “team.” Make sure to use appropriate verb forms based on the meaning and context.

“Rest” Cases: Singular or Plural Determined by Following Nouns

The word “rest” allows the noun that follows to dictate whether the verb should be singular or plural. For instance:

  1. Here is the rest of the milk. In this sentence, “milk” is an uncountable noun, so a singular verb is used.
  2. Here are the rest of the kids. When paired with a plural noun like “kids,” a plural verb is required.

Understanding the rules around using “rest” with singular and plural determiners helps ensure proper subject-verb agreement.

In summary, navigating advanced grammar situations requires a firm understanding of subject-verb agreement and contextual nuances. These tips will aid in mastering the correct use of “here is” and “here are” with grouped singular nouns, words like “couple” and “family,” and utilizing “rest” in sentences.

Practical Applications: “Here Is” vs. “Here Are” in Daily Use

Correctly using “here is” and “here are” can make a difference in how people perceive your writing and communication skills. To ensure you are using these phrases accurately, try rearranging your sentences to maintain clarity. By doing so, you will recognize and correct the grammatical errors.

For example, if you find yourself wanting to say, “Here is the offers,” rephrase it to “The offers are here.” This reordering will expose the grammatical mistake and enable you to use the right form by saying, “Here are the offers.”

Remember that this same principle applies to other locative adverbs, such as “there is” and “there are.” By practicing proper grammar usage in your daily English communication, your conversational grammar will naturally improve, presenting a professional and intelligent image to your audience.