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much/many fewer

 
 
Reply Wed 27 Aug, 2008 02:01 am
Hundreds of people died in the riots, though much/many fewer than last year.

Which word should I use?

Many thanks.
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Type: Question • Score: 0 • Views: 2,261 • Replies: 7

 
McTag
 
  3  
Reply Wed 27 Aug, 2008 02:08 am
@tanguatlay,

Many fewer.

Thank you for not saying "much less". Smile
OmSigDAVID
 
  2  
Reply Wed 27 Aug, 2008 02:40 am
@McTag,
Yes, because u r referring to individual units.
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Thu 28 Aug, 2008 06:46 pm
@OmSigDAVID,
In this case, wrt 'fewer' vs 'less', yes to 'less', but overall, it just ain't that simple.

===================
M-W
less

usage The traditional view is that less applies to matters of degree, value, or amount and modifies collective nouns, mass nouns, or nouns denoting an abstract whole while fewer applies to matters of number and modifies plural nouns. Less has been used to modify plural nouns since the days of King Alfred and the usage, though roundly decried, appears to be increasing. Less is more likely than fewer to modify plural nouns when distances, sums of money, and a few fixed phrases are involved <less than 100 miles> <an investment of less than $2000> <in 25 words or less> and as likely as fewer to modify periods of time <in less (or fewer) than four hours>.
OmSigDAVID
 
  2  
Reply Thu 28 Aug, 2008 07:25 pm
@JTT,
Quote:
In this case, wrt 'fewer' vs 'less', yes to 'less',
but overall, it just ain't that simple.

Y not ??



Quote:
The traditional view is that less applies to matters of degree, value, or amount and modifies collective nouns, mass nouns, or nouns denoting an abstract whole while fewer applies to matters of number and modifies plural nouns. Less has been used to modify plural nouns since the days of King Alfred and the usage, though roundly decried, appears to be increasing. Less is more likely than fewer to modify plural nouns when distances, sums of money, and a few fixed phrases are involved <less than 100 miles> <an investment of less than $2000> <in 25 words or less> and as likely as fewer to modify periods of time <in less (or fewer) than four hours>.

This makes sense to ME.
When referring to "100 miles" one view that as one unitary distance,
not a many individual miles.

When referring to "less than $2000" one sees the subject of the sentence
as being unitary, instead of 2000 individual, distinct dollars
as one woud if discussing 2000 horses.





David
tanguatlay
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 07:50 pm
@OmSigDAVID,
Many thanks, fellow members, for being so helpful.

With warmest wishes.
0 Replies
 
McTag
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 02:27 am

Less bacon, fewer pigs.

Smile
McTag
 
  1  
Reply Sun 31 Aug, 2008 03:04 pm
@McTag,

Hey check this, coincidence

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7590440.stm
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