Wednesday, March 28

a fishy grammar naught?

My youngest and I were reading a Bible storybook last night and she stopped me after I read this sentence:

"There's a boy here who has five loaves and two fishes," replied Andrew, "but they won't go very far in this crowd!"

Notice anything?

She did.  Her immediate statement was - "That's bad grammar!"  The example she used came from a sentence that is used around home after a fishing outing:  

"I caught five FISH today on Banana Creek."  

And she was right.  We never use the word *fishes* as the plural for *fish*.  When we use the plural of the noun *fish*, we say *fish*  We'd only use the word *fishes* as a verb.  

Honestly, I don't know.  Is the word *fish* like the word *deer* or *sheep* when it comes to singular and plural? Or is this a midwestern thing?  Or an odd grammar thing?  

Fish or fishes?  What say ye?


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

2 comments:

Luke said...

I bumped into this in high school. One of my teachers used "fishes" (plural) in class. I stopped him. He replied, "What you talking about, Bible Boy?"

...turns out that KJV/NKJV has "fishes" and the NIV-ilk uses "fish." Both are technically correct, but I'm much more of a "fish" guy... been reading NIV too long, I guess [smile].

Similarly, you can cut your hair, or have the hairs on your head cut... or you can trim your hairs, or have the hair on your head trimmed...

~Luke

mom said...

Thanks for stopping by, Luke!

My daughter will be greatly relieved to know she can say FISH and still be correct :-)

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Blog Widget by LinkWithin