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

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

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

LEGOs — Is the Plural form of LEGO incorrect?

On this page (#18), the writer says, rather authoritatively, that “LEGOs” (plural of LEGO) is wrong because “LEGO” is a company name (a proper noun). I disagree. Firstly, there is no grammatical rule that says a proper noun cannot be used to refer to a countable object. “Mac” is a proper noun. It’s a name of a product but it is also used to refer to the individual Macintosh machines, i.e., “Macs”. Think of car companies, like Honda, BMW, and Porsche. When we refer to their cars, we say, “Hondas”, “BMWs”, and “Porsches”. BMW’s own site uses the plural form: “Today’s BMWs are equipped with...” And, Porsche’s own site says, “Barely any two Porsches are identical.”

So, I would say “LEGOs” is perfectly fine if you are referring to the pieces of LEGO. It is, however, wrong to say “LEGOs”, if you are referring to the brand/company. 

And, this should be a separate issue from how the company officially uses the term for their marketing and communication. They could have their own policies but that does not make “LEGOs” grammatically incorrect. The correct use of a word is not determined by the person who coined it.

What do you think?

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Comments

wrong
if that were the case gooses would be plural for goose and mices would be plural for mouse
It's not even an English word so how can you tack on English grammar rules to it? "Lego", derived from the Danish phrase leg godt [lɑjˀ ˈgʌd], which means "play well". So it's a verb. Verbs are not pluralized.

Timmber Jul-16-2021

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There are LEGO tiles, LEGO bricks, LEGO plates, LEGO minifigs, LEGO wheels, LEGO sets, LEGO books etc etc etc. you want to pluralize something, pluralize the item, not the brand.

Timmber Jul-16-2021

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Regarding the many commenters who've made the "You wouldn't say sheeps..." argument:

Isn't that a classic case of begging the question (in the actual meaning of that oft-misused phrase, i.e., to assume the truth of the premise of one's argument)?

Who decreed that "Lego" is equivalent to "sheep" and "deer," for example, with regard to the toy name supposedly also being a plural forms not needing to end with "s"? And why does the "LEGO/Lego/Legos" debate attract more fervor than does the constant and potentially dangerous misuse of "media" as a monolithic singular entity?

If Ford declares that, henceforth, its name is also a plural, would I then be wrong to say, "I own two Fords"?

If I had told my grammatically precocious child, "Pick up your Lego," he would have scoffed, "Which one?"

Ramart Jul-23-2021

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