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Are Pliers Plural or Singular? What’s the Singular of Pliers?

Pliers are a plural-only noun because they are made up of parts. 'A pair of pliers' refers to them as a singular noun.

What’s the plural of “pliers”?

  • Pliers are a plural-only noun.

Plural-only nouns, like the name suggests, have no singular noun form and are only referred to as a plural noun (for the most part).  With items or objects that are made up of pieces or parts, we refer to them as a plural, since they’re technically made of more than one thing. Common objects like glasses, trousers, jeans, goggles, and so on, are all made of parts or pairs, and so are referred to exclusively as plural nouns.

What’s the singular of pliers?

To refer to a single pair of pliers, you would use the phrase ‘a pair of pliers.’ As in, ‘Can you please hand me a pair of pliers?’ In other words, in practice and conversation, ‘pliers’ usually means one item (or pair).

What are pliers?

Collins-Dictionary defines pliers as:

A tool with two handles at one end and two hard, flat, metal parts at the other. Pliers are used for holding or pulling out things such as nails, or for bending or cutting wire.

Plural-only nouns

The following objects and nouns are exclusively used as plural nouns in English, with no singular noun form.

Plural-Only Nouns
Plural-only/non-singular nouns. By Gflex on Canva.

“Pliers”, used in sentences

1. He gripped the sole with a pair of pliers and began to peel it back.

2. Have you got a pair of pliers?

3. Pass me that pair of pliers, please.

4. The best way to open it is with pliers.

5. Piers was at her side in a moment when he saw the trouble she was having, pliers in hand, tying the cans tightly so that no spaces were left.

Origin of the word pliers

From etymology online on pliers (n.):

“Small pincers with long jaws adapted for holding small articles,” 1560s, plural agent noun from ply (v.2). French cognate plieur meant “folder”.

What’re personal pronouns?

What’s the difference between they’re, their, and there?

Whose vs who’s?


  1. Definition of pliers.
  2. Sentences using pliers.
  3. Origin of pliers.

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