San
Lv 4
San asked in Society & CultureLanguages · 1 month ago

Which word is correct?

They seem to think either you or I (am / are) not telling the truth.

Thanks!

2 Answers

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  • Dave
    Lv 7
    1 month ago
    Favorite Answer

    "...that you or I are not..."  I believe this one is going to come down to a native speaker's sense for what usage is, rather than anything to do with "grammatical agreement."  Yes, the 'am' is closest to the 'I' in the sentence you constructed above -- and 'am' goes with 'I': there is no doubt about that, and that might be the 'grammatical argument'. But it doesn't sound as good as 'are'. Also, for this one highly irregular verb in English, even the 'tag question formation' defaults to an 'are' form.  By that I mean, "I am telling the truth, aren't I?" is how the 'tag Q' is formed, and that is correct. It's habit more than grammar, I believe, and "...truth, *amn't I?" just does not exist in English. ... 

    Source(s): native AmE
  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    They seem to think that one of us, either you or I, is not telling the truth.

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