Submitted by SamG on November 22, 2011

“with the exception of” or “with the exceptions of”

I’ve come across the following dependent clause that has piqued my grammar interest, and I’m not sure if said clause is grammatically correct:

“...with the exception of a roast beef sandwich, a protein-dense smoothie from Jamba Juice, and 500 million dollars!”

In this case, should the word “exception” be plural since it’s referring to a list (and subsequently the preceding “the” should be dropped as well)?

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Keep it as it is. Here are two examples from MWDEU, which says 'with the exception of' is commonly used as a synonym for 'except (for)':

... with the exception of British Guiana and the Virgin Islands.
... with the exception of cases of deliberate, premeditated theft

http://books.google.com/books?id=2yJusP0vrdgC&a...

Go to p 962

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I agree with Warsaw Will. :)

"with the exception of" is correct and generally accepted.

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Thank you, Warsaw Will!

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Thanks Hairy Scot - Sorry if I've been a bit hasty elsewhere. Lang may your lum reek. :)

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@ Warsaw Will

Nae problem!
Just read yer profile an' had a squiz at yer blog.
I am impressed, and will now consider my responses more carefully.
Although I recognise that language evolves there are a number of things that make me cringe (a list too long to type here), but I am sure that a number of the words and phrases I now use freely would have my high school English teachers turning in the graves upon which I oft vowed l would one day piss. (Had to slip that one in). :)
I laugh when I remember the many occasions I received 6 from the Lochgelly for my misdemeanours, the worst of which was probably my rendering Hamlet's soliloquy as if I were John Wayne.

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Awrrabest!!

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@Everybody else - Sorry, this is off topic, but there are some language points, vaguely.

@Hairy Scot - Thanks for visiting my blog, and having a good look round.

Of course we all have our pet peeves - mine include the weakening of the meaning of the word 'awesome' and the use of the expression 'going forward'. That's fine as long as they remain peeves, and I don't start pontificating to others; you just won't hear me using them. (Although I do occasionally write about them.)

I have to confess that when I got the tawse at school, I hadn't realised it was 'a Lochgelly'. In my time I also got the cane (publicly) and at one school they had their own particular instrument: a leather-covered bone. It had a name, but the life of me I can't remember what it was. Ah! I've found it on Google - ferula.

There's an interesting article here - http://www.corpun.com/scotland.htm

The two of us went to school in the days when both corporal punishment and prescriptivism reigned. Thankfully British schools have got rid of the former, and largely of the latter, although in the case of grammar, I admit, throwing the baby out with the bathwater somewhat. Hopefully, they have now found some sort of balance.

There are all sorts of things I believed in then which I don't believe in now, and language rules set in stone is/are (?) one of them. (Help, somebody!)

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@Warsaw Will
Ah the good old days!
Lochgelly was home to the manufacturer of the fiendish instruments.

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