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# less v/s fewer

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Manager
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less v/s fewer [#permalink]  18 Apr 2006, 05:16
case 1. The number of petals left on the rose is less/ fewer than 5.
case 2. There are less/ fewer than 5 petals left on the rose.

Should it be less or fewer. Do explain in each case.
VP
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I think it should be 'fewer' in both cases.
The number of petals can be counted, so 'fewer'.
PR does a very good job with this.

Countable: number, fewer/many
eg. I have many \$10 notes. (number of notes can be counted)

Not-countable: amount, less/much(or more)
eg. I have more money than \$10. (amount of money cannot be counted)
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I agree. You can count petals. You will use fewer when you can count.

For example: I have less hair than i had before(not countable)
There are few students in the class(Countable)

MA466
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1st statement should be "less" and the 2nd statement should be "fewer"

In the first one we are talking about "the number" and be careful, the verb is "is" !!

In the second one we are talking about the petals. Petal is a countable noun. So we should use "fewer".
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Re: less v/s fewer [#permalink]  18 Apr 2006, 13:12
The number of petals left on the rose is less/ fewer than 5.

rephrasing this : number ....... is less/fewer than 5?

I think less than 5

Fewer .... countable (5)...

pseudo wrote:
case 1. The number of petals left on the rose is less/ fewer than 5.
case 2. There are less/ fewer than 5 petals left on the rose.

Should it be less or fewer. Do explain in each case.
Senior Manager
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Yeah even I have never heard anyone commenting after I finish writing my program "MAKE SURE YOU HAVE FEWER BUGS IN YOUR CODE! "
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i think it shud be fewer in both cases as no of petals can be counted

but this is the case generally when specific no. (5) is not mentioned

eg. You can eat fewer cookies

some one plz explain
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selene wrote:
1st statement should be "less" and the 2nd statement should be "fewer"

In the first one we are talking about "the number" and be careful, the verb is "is" !!

In the second one we are talking about the petals. Petal is a countable noun. So we should use "fewer".

I agree with selene. Fewer is right only for second statement.
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