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Unit 1: English In A Minute
Give us a minute and we'll give you English

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  1. 1 English In A Minute

Session 9

Welcome to English In A Minute. Give us a minute and we'll give you a hot tip about English. Grammar, vocabulary... there's so much to learn! And all taught by your favourite BBC Learning English staff!

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    Activity 1

Activity 1

Person vs persons vs people vs peoples

Do you have a minute to spare to learn some English? Here's Dan to tell you all about the difference between person, persons, people and peoples. Lucky you! Give us 60 seconds and we'll give you the English!

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Dan
Hi, I’m Dan from BBC Learning English and today I’m going to talk to you about person and persons, people and peoples.

A person is a human man, woman, or child. It is a singular countable noun. There was one person at the door.

The plural of person is people. It refers to a group or a number of human beings. It is a plural countable noun. There were three people at the door.

So how about persons?

Persons is a plural countable noun. It's similar to people, but it's considered more polite and more formal. It’s most often seen written down. This lift can hold a maximum of 15 persons.

And peoples?

Peoples is the countable plural form of people and comes from the other meaning of people. People can mean nation. The Aztecs were a people that lived in the Americas. Or, there are many peoples living on the Earth. They are all human - so far. 

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