The Grammarphobia Blog

Email intuition

Q: A friend insists the word “email” is an adjective, not a noun. He argues that one should say, “I sent an email message,” not “I sent an email.” What do you think?

A: I disagree. While “email” is still a young word and still an unfinished product, its use as a singular noun is pretty well established. Here are the usages that seem to have emerged:

(1) Singular: “I sent an email.”

(2) Plural: “I sent seven emails.”

(3) Collective (in the sense of correspondence): “I have lots of email to answer.”

For more, see the “email” vs. “mail” entry on The Grammarphobia Blog.

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