As you are probably aware, our contemporary English content is now available through Lexico.com (https://www.lexico.com/en), and our old English dictionary site no longer exists.

As a result of this, this forum will be closed by 6th September.
We have already disabled new threads, but comments can still be posted on existing discussions to give a chance for outstanding questions to be answered.

The English dictionary community team would like the opportunity to say a huge thanks to all of you who have participated by posting questions and helping other community members.
We hope this forum has been useful, and that you have enjoyed being a part of it.

If you would like to get in touch with any OED-related queries, please write to
[email protected]

And if you would like to contribute suggestions to the OED, please do so by visiting: https://public.oed.com/contribute-to-the-oed/

Thank you very much indeed, and good bye!
The community team

Grammatical Mistake in Your Definition

I was checking your online Oxford Learner's Dictionary for the meaning of the following idiom(https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/once-over?q=once-over):

Idioms
give somebody/something a/the once-over (informal)
to look at somebody/something quickly to see what they or it are like.

to clean something quickly
"She gave the room a quick once-over before the guests arrived."

The definition says "to look at....they or it are like". I was thinking, should not the verb after the pronoun "it" be "is", instead of "are".

Comments

  • Hello @Antaryamin

    As this definition includes more than one subject, are generally works here.

    But please do feel free to get back in touch, should you query any grammar on our sites in future :)

    Thanks,
    Charlotte

  • jackykhorjackykhor
    edited August 1

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think when a subject consists of a plural noun and a singular noun connected by "or", the verb should agree with the noun closest to it. So, the correct clause should be "they or it is like".

Sign In or Register to comment.