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English-German Translation of
much or many

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Frage:
"much" or "many"?  
von Squirrel-quattro (UN), 2016-08-01, 21:12  like dislike  Spam?  
1) Do you say "One liter / litre is not much." or "One liter / litre is not many."? If you say "much", why?
2) Do you say "Ten liters / litres are not much." or "Ten liters / litres are not many."? If you say "much", why?
Antwort: 
Litres measure liquids.  #850420
von Lllama (GB/AT), 2016-08-01, 21:16  like dislike  Spam?  
Liquids are generally mass/non-count nouns and therefore you say much.

One litre is not much.
Ten litres is not much - although ten is a plural number of litres, the liquid is considered as a whole and is therefore singular.
Antwort: 
von geo255 (US), 2016-08-01, 21:17  like dislike  Spam?  
 #850421
Here it is a matter of whether the liquid is considered as a mass noun or not.  If I am talking about gasoline as a mass noun, then I say "Ten liters is not much (gasoline).  However, if I am considering each liter as a separate part of the amount of gasoline I am dealing with, I say "Ten liters is not many (individual liters).
Antwort: 
von Galtrix (US), 2016-08-01, 21:19  like dislike  Spam?  
 #850422
1. One liter isn't much.
2. Ten liters isn't much.

Explanation: Much requires a measurable value. For example, 15 quarts isn't much (or a lot). Or... "My computer wasn't much" implies that the computer didn't cost much. The measurable value in that situation would be the dollars that the computer costs.
Chat:     
Thank you very much!  #850424
von Squirrel-quattro (UN), 2016-08-01, 22:39  like dislike  Spam?  
Antwort: 
von geo255 (US), 2016-08-01, 23:22  like dislike  Spam?  
 #850437
#2 of Galitrix's examples, I believe, should read: "Ten liters aren't much".  Colloquially you can get away with the singular number but it really is plural.
Antwort: 
Units  #850441
von atemp (US), Last modified: 2016-08-02, 00:24  like dislike  Spam?  
"Ten liters aren't much" does not work in common usage. The use of much over many reinforces the singular mass-noun aspect of a (total) quantity of liquid, of which "liter" is only the base unit.

Move the decimal around or change units to see the logical sense in this: "One decaliter is not much." = "Ten thousand milliliters is not much." = "10.567 US liquid quarts is not much." ="0.01 kiloliter is not much."

But then in six dogs in the neighborhood is far too many the clause before the is refers to a condition or state, not the dogs per se, hence the use of is instead of are. Then the far too many acknowledges that it is the quantity of individual dogs, taken together, that is problematic for the speaker.
Chat:     
Thanks again!  #850471
von Squirrel-quattro (UN), 2016-08-02, 10:34  like dislike  Spam?  

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