10 confusing nouns that we use carelessly.

Errors in English grammar occur when we tend to translate the sentences from mother tongue into English.

Here are some very common mistakes that we commit in our day to day conversations.

Read and see if you commit some of these mistakes too!

1) Cousin brother

Have you noticed your friends and relatives referring to their cousins as cousin brother and cousin sister?

Infact, many of us do it ourself.

Actually, the use of 'cousin brother/cousin sister' is a slang usage.

Cousin is the son or daughter of an uncle or aunt. The word 'cousin' is never   followed by the words 'brother/sister'.

The word 'cousin' is a gender-neutral noun.

Incorrect: She is my cousin sister. (This sentence is incorrect because the word cousin is followed by the word sister which is unnecessary. 'She' itself tells us that the cousin is a girl and hence you need not use the word sister along with cousin.)

Correct: She is my cousin.

2) Daughter-in-laws

This is one of the common mistakes committed when talking about more than one daughter-in-law.

Daughter-in-law is the singular form and daughters-in-law is the correct plural form.

Generally, the plural form of daughter-in-law is wrongly referred to as daughter-in-laws.  

Incorrect: She loves her daughter-in-laws.
Correct: She loves her daughters-in-law.

3) Weather/Climate

This is another common mistake which confuses us.

1) How is the weather today?
2) How is the climate today?

Which is correct? Any guess!
Statement (1) is correct. Here is the reason,

Climate and weather are not exactly same.

Climate is the average weather for specified interval of time.

Weather specifies day to day state of atmosphere (temperature, humidity, precipitation, cloudiness, etc.)

Hence, if you are just talking about today, then weather is the correct word.

4) Police

Police is a collective noun. These nouns are singular in form but are used as plural.

The police is searching the culprit. (Incorrect)
The police are searching the culprit. (Correct)

5) Date of birth

She asked, “What is your date of birth?” (Incorrect)
Your date of birth  is a slang expression and should be eliminated.

The correct way to ask this question should be,
She asked, “What is the date of your birth?” (Correct)

6) English teacher

Indians generally commit a mistake saying, she is my/our English teacher.

Incorrect: Mrs. Gupta is our English teacher.

'English teacher' means that the teacher belongs to England. Hence, use of English teacher becomes a slang usage.

If we mean to say that, she is the person who teaches the language of English, then the correct use is 'the teacher of English'.

Correct: Mrs. Gupta is our teacher of English.

7) Fishes

Gold fishes live in water. (Incorrect)
Gold fish live in water. (Correct)

Fish is a noun which has the same form in singular and plural.

The word fishes is generally used in biology to refer multiple species.

So, if you just mean to say, you saw two individual fish, just say, I saw two fish.  

8) Cost/Price

These two words are very confusing and we tend to believe that they can be replaced by each other without changing the meaning of the sentence.

Cost comprises money, time and labour without considering the profit.

Price comprises cost and profit.

The amount paid by the shopkeeper to buy a product is called as cost and the amount paid by the customer to buy the same product is called as price.

Understand the difference here

What is the cost of this car? (Incorrect)
What is the price of this car? (Correct)

This year the price of production was very high. (Incorrect)
This year the cost of production was very high. (Correct)

9) House/Home

Here is the difference

House is particular type of building to live in.
Home is a particular house where one lives and is emotionally attached to.

The correct use of these words is discussed here,

His house is made of bricks.
I love staying at home.

10) Poor people

He donated money to the poor people. (Incorrect)
He donated money to the poor. (Correct)

Poor people is the wrong usage.