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Compound Gerund Subject Verb Agreement

Compound gerund subject-verb agreement is a grammatical structure that can be tricky to master. It involves using two or more gerunds as the subject of a sentence, and ensuring that the verb agrees with the entire subject, not just one part of it.

Gerunds are words that end in -ing and act as nouns in a sentence. Some examples include “swimming,” “running,” and “dancing.” Compound gerunds occur when multiple gerunds are used together, such as “swimming and diving” or “running, jumping, and throwing.”

To ensure proper subject-verb agreement with compound gerunds, it is important to remember that the verb must agree with the entire subject, not just one part of it. For example, in the sentence “Swimming and diving is my favorite hobby,” the singular verb “is” agrees with the compound subject “swimming and diving” as a whole.

However, if the compound gerund subject is joined by “and” and refers to two different actions, then a plural verb should be used. For example, “Running and jumping are both important for a healthy lifestyle.” In this case, the plural verb “are” agrees with the two distinct actions of running and jumping.

It is also important to pay attention to any intervening phrases or clauses that may come between the compound gerund subject and the verb. For example, in the sentence “Running, swimming, and cycling for long distances requires endurance,” the intervening phrase “for long distances” does not change the subject-verb agreement, and the singular verb “requires” still agrees with the compound gerund subject “running, swimming, and cycling.”

In conclusion, understanding compound gerund subject-verb agreement is crucial for clear and grammatically correct writing. Always remember to use a singular verb with a compound gerund subject that refers to a single action, and use a plural verb when the compound gerund subject refers to two or more distinct actions. Pay attention to any intervening phrases or clauses that may come between the subject and verb, but remember that they do not change the subject-verb agreement. With this knowledge, you can confidently use compound gerunds in your writing while maintaining proper grammar.