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Unit 17: - There is / There are

There is / There are

"There" is a kind of pronoun used to show something you know exists.

Compare these two sentences:
- "A fly is in my soup."
- "There is a fly in my soup!"
The first sentence is factual and impersonal. The fly is the subject, and the soup is the object. In the second sentence the object is "a fly in my soup", so the subject is "There". "There" functions as a kind of dummy subject that represents a more personal perspective, rather than a factual statement.

Especially in spoken English we usually use the contraction "there's", rather than "there is".

Here are the forms of "there" in the Simple Present.

Statements

There's a tree in my garden.
There are books on the desk.

Negatives

There isn't a computer in my bedroom.
There aren't any cinemas here.

Questions

Is there a restaurant here?
Yes, there is. / No, there isn't


There is usually subject-verb agreement when using there is/there are. For example:
- There are ten students in my class.
- There is ten students in my class.

Sometimes however we can use "there is" with compound subjects, for example:
There's a bank and a post office near my house.




 

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