We’ve already discussed compound subjects, which have two subjects connected with the conjunction “and” that take the same plural verb. But sometimes there are two singular subjects in a sentence that are joined by a phrase like “as well as” or “along with” or “combined with” or “in addition to” or “together with” or “accompanied by,” and these two subjects share the same verb.
Q: Do you use a singular or plural verb in such a case?
A: You’ll see why if you just diagram the sentence.
(Coming soon in a future Tip of the Day)
A time stamp as well as the date is recorded by the tool upon activation.
The driller along with the company man has the authority to make that decision.
The bottom water drive combined with the water injection is expected to recover 60% of the oil in place.
The oil minister accompanied by the CEO is expected to arrive at 2 p.m.
If you substitute these italicized expressions with “and” in these same sentence constructions, you will need to use a plural verb.
One caveat when using “as well as” in oil patch writing:
When people working in the oil and gas industry see the word “well,” one thing comes to mind. Try to use “and” instead of “as well as” whenever possible so the word “well” doesn’t conjure up the typical image in the readers’ brains.
Q: How are you today?
A: I’m well, thank you.
Q: You’re not a well!
Profound Quote of the Day:
A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body.
– Benjamin Franklin, American statesman, 1706-1790