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Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Plural of Yes

How do I correctly write YES as a plural. Example: # of Yes’s.

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I believe "Yesses" is correct. It looks really funny, I know.

scyllacat Jul-21-2010

15 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

The correct plural is yeses. Nouns ending in -s (focus or excess, for example) generally are made plural simply by adding -es.

douglas.bryant Jul-21-2010

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The Oxford American Dictionary accepts both yeses and yesses. Also gases and gasses. Compare "bus" and "buses" and I think "yeses" gets the win.

painintheenglish Jul-21-2010

20 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

AGREED... ?

hmmm Jun-09-2011

6 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

yes plural is AYES, this is correct

malsawma Oct-09-2011

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Yesses is correct

Faaga Dec-14-2011

7 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

Vot or me please

Faaga Dec-14-2011

9 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

My original instinct was yeses. As long as its acceptable - I'm happy.

2daysgone Feb-18-2012

6 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

Too funny, before I looked at this website, I sent a response to a coworker using every single answer on this page...Wow what a pain the in the english! Thanks for your approval...

april Aug-22-2012

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Glad retired English teacher is retired. A bit of work on apostrophes and use of italics required. See me after class. Yeses, as in buses.

Stevie1 Sep-17-2012

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Retired English Teacher: I believe your rule applies only to numbers (in numeral form, not spelt out) and single letters, not words. So your first example (3's) is correct, but your second (that's) isn't. It's yeses.

Pigletta_sub Oct-18-2012

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I'd be more inclined to go for 'yes's as then you are acknowledging that there technically is no plural of 'yes'

Owen Jan-19-2013

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Is it correct to also say the numbers of yes, as one would say the types of cake?

Kenneth Harding Jul-10-2013

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I'm pretty sure it should be yeses, like buses and gases (as already mentioned).
Is the plural of no "noes"?

Kenneth - I don't think you can say "numbers of yes" any more than you can say "numbers of person". There's only one number so it shouldn't be plural (unlike "types of cake" where there are several types). That's my take on it anyway - I might be wrong.

Chris B Jul-10-2013

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'Yes' can be a countable noun - "I'll take that as a yes, then", so we can definitely have a plural, and don't need to resort to apostrophes (yes's). Dictionaries seem to give two possibilities - 'yesses' and 'yeses', (although I'm getting red-lined for the double s version). Personally, I prefer 'yesses' - why?

If you simply add 'es' to yes, the e could look as though it was hardening the s, so it looks as though it might sound like 'yezes'. The example of 'focus' is not the same, as the stress or accent falls on 'fo', not 'us', and 'excess' already has a double s. 'Yeses' simply looks a bit odd to me.

On the other hand, for gas, my dictionary gives 'gases' (less frequently 'gasses'), and as someone else pointed out - buses.

@Chris B - Yes, the plural of no is noes (according to two dictionaries I checked) . And I agree - 'The number of yes(s)es was higher than the number of noes'.

As far as I know, we only use plurals of yes and no like this when talking of votes, so we could avoid the whole problem by simply saying - "The yes votes easily outnumbered the no votes"

Warsaw Will Jul-11-2013

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As an aside, when I was a kid living in the UK I wondered what the hell the "eyes to the right" and "nose to the left" meant.

Chris B Jul-11-2013

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@Chris B - Good one! That took me a second or two to work out - at my school we got dressed up as soldiers twice a week and did drill, and I was getting confused with "Eyes right", but I take it you're talking about voting in the House of Commons.

I have a similar confession - for years I had come across the the past form "misled" in books, but wasn't aware of having heard it. Having read it lots of times, I knew exactly what it meant, but always assumed it was the past of that well-known verb - to misle. It was only when I heard it on the radio one day that I realised my mistake. What an idiot I felt! But I've since discovered that I'm not the only one to have made that particular mistake.

Warsaw Will Jul-11-2013

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The plural form of "yes" is "yeses" i checked microsoft word if you dont believe me check there.

This is correct Apr-23-2014

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Well if Microsoft say so, it must be right (!). I think I will stick with Oxford, which gives me a choice. And my choice will continue to be 'yesses' for the reasons I've given above. Admittedly the only other countable one syllable words with a vowel followed by s I can find are bus and gas, where single s is standard, which rather destroys my argument. But I just prefer the look of yesses to yeses. Luckily, I doubt that I will ever have to put this to the test in real life.

Warsaw Will Apr-23-2014

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Let's get back to Yea and Nay.
The plurals are easier.

:-))

user106928 Apr-24-2014

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Yeses or Yesses are OK. I'd prefer Yeses.

e.g. Paul Kingsnorth's book "One No, Many Yeses"

But definitely not Yes's or Yes' (That is grammatically incorrect)

Maurice Spurway Oct-29-2014

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Help me i dont know what to do B-)

Harambe Feb-21-2017

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It's definitely NOT yes's. After all, we're not saying that the plural of yes belongs to yes! Actually, in my opinion, that form looks wrong even when pluralizing numbers. So, for instance, I usually write "the 1970s" and not "the 1970's". But I know the accepted form with numbers includes the apostrophe. It just seems unnecessary, unless where a 5 could be mistaken for an s in a particular typeface.

Anyway, "yeses" is apparently correct. However, someone mentioned "ayes" which is an interesting alternative.

Wayne Phillips Jun-24-2017

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