Collective mounds - singular or plural verb agreement

PaulB2Kwiziq community member

Collective mounds - singular or plural verb agreement

“María’s family are happy” is given as the translation to “La familia de María está contenta”. 

This didn’t sound right to me so I googled and found this- https://style.mla.org/verbs-with-collective-nouns/

The reference would suggest that the translation should be ”María’s family is happy” as the members of the family are in agreement. 

Any comments would be helpful. Thank you. 

Asked 1 year ago
InmaKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hola Paul

We have some information in Kwiziq about this as it is a common question both in French and Spanish. Here it is

It doesn't seem like in this specific sentence we are referring to the family as a unit or the family as individual different people in the family, so both the singular and the plural verb are fine. 

Saludos

Inma

KateC1Kwiziq community member
In American English, collective nouns are almost always treated as singular so the "family are" sounds very strange to me too.  
KateC1Kwiziq community member

In American English, we almost always treat collectives as singular so the "Family are happy" seemed quite off to me too.  

Collective mounds - singular or plural verb agreement

“María’s family are happy” is given as the translation to “La familia de María está contenta”. 

This didn’t sound right to me so I googled and found this- https://style.mla.org/verbs-with-collective-nouns/

The reference would suggest that the translation should be ”María’s family is happy” as the members of the family are in agreement. 

Any comments would be helpful. Thank you. 

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