What Is The Difference Between "Number "and "Amount"?


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Will Martin Profile
Will Martin answered
This is one of the most common problems in the language; a very large NUMBER of people can't tell the difference, which causes a large AMOUNT of trouble. (This sentence is an easy way to remember the difference.)

It's just that number refers, logically enough, to nouns that can be counted - so anything that you can have two, three, four etc of, you can also have a number of. So I could have a number of apples, friends, problems etc.

Amount is used with nouns that can't be counted - ie, you can't have 2, 3 or 4 sun, money or happiness, you also can't talk about a "number of money" etc. You would talk about a "large amount of money (or sun, or happiness) instead.

That's the whole rule; but a lot of people don't know it, so you will often hear mistakes being made ("A huge amount of people" is a typical error.)
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Amount: a quantity or degree of something, considered as a unit or total

amount or number?

Amount is normally used with singular forms of words or meanings that have no plural, that is, so-called uncountable or mass nouns such as coal, happiness, and warfare, whereas number is used with plural nouns such as books, questions, and ships: A large amount of coal.Any amount of happiness.A large number of books.A good number of cheeses (= types of cheese).An excessive number of questions. In everyday speech, amount is sometimes used when number is strictly called for: A large amount of books. This should be avoided in formal speaking and writing.
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