Concord of Number and Person

Concord means agreement, in Grammar.The use of verbs and their agreement with their subjects in number (singular or plural) and person.

  1. be and its various forms: am, is, are, was, were
  2. do, does
  3. have, has
  4. verbs


The verb be has the forms am, is, are, was, were, depending on the tense (present or past), the person (first, second, or third), and the number (singular or plural) of the subject.

Person (in grammar) is a class of personal pronouns:

  1. First person: I, we
  2. Second person: you
  3. Third person: he, she, it, they

Present Tense

  Singular Plural
First Person am are 
Second Person are are 
Third Person is are 

Past Tense

  Singular Plural
First Person was were 
Second Person were were 
Third Person was were 


1. am (used with I in the present tense)

  • I am an Indian. I am writing a book on India.

2. is (used with he, she, it and singular nouns, in the present tense)

  • Rajiv Gandhi is the Prime Minister of India.
  • My friend Ramesh is working hard these days.
  • It is very cold today.
  • English is spoken in a large number of countries.

3. are (used with plurals and with you in the present tense)

  • You are very good at Mathematics.
  • My friends are at the Zoo today. We are also going there.
  • Children below five are allowed to travel free on Indian Railways.

4. was (used with I, he, she, it and with singular nouns, in the past tense)

  • I was in Delhi yesterday.
  • Einstein was a famous scientist.
  • Mohan was writing a letter when I went to see him.
  • The hall was decorated for yesterday's meeting.

5. were (used with plurals, and with you in the past tense)

  • We were expecting you yesterday.
  • You were not at home when I rang you up.
  • A lot of people were present at the meeting.
  • Ten people were killed in a bus accident yesterday.

do, does

The present tense forms are do and does. Of these, do is used with plurals and with I and you; does is used with the third person singular.


  • I do not smoke cigarettes.
  • Do you play tennis?
  • We do not wish to hurt you in any way.
  • Shyam does not speak Bengali.
  • Does your father know that you are here?

have, has

The present tense forms are have and has. Of these, have is used with plurals and with I and you; has is used with the third person singular.


  • My friend Sunil has dark hair.
  • I have a bad cold.
  • Have you read Animal Farm?
  • I have not seen many English films.
  • We have not been able to help him in any way.


In verbs that have regular forms, the third person singular of the present simple tense is formed by the addition of -s or -es (for example looks, comes,  maintains, relies, passes, mixes, reaches, pushes). The simple form is used in all other cases.


  • Government officials give the islanders coconuts as gifts. The Lieutenant Governor gives the islanders food and medicines.
  • I / We / You / All of us / Most children like reading stories.
  • My friend Suresh / The doctor / He / She / No one / One of my friends likes reading poems.