GCSE English

Less and fewer

10 Items or less... banner on display in one of the UK's largest supermarkets near Cambridge!

Even really big supermarkets get this wrong! Checkouts still have signs above them reading "10 items or less" when it should be "10 items or fewer".

Let's see why:

You can have less of something if it is a single thing:
less sugar, less hair, less time.

You can only have fewer items of a plural something:
fewer men, fewer A* grades, fewer shoes.

You can have less money, but you can't have less five pound notes: you must have fewer five pound notes!

Your Dad can have less hair, but not less hairs: he must have fewer hairs!

Advice and advise
Affect and effect
Bought and brought
Complement and compliment
Discreet and discrete
Hear and here
Its and it's
Lead and led
Less and fewer
Licence and license
Loose and lose
  Plane and plain
Poor, pore and pour
Practice and practise
Principal and principle
Sort and sought
Stationary and stationery - new!
There, their and they're
Threw, through and thorough
To and too
Warn and Worn
Whose and who's
Your and you're

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