As a reply: There isn't any - referring to a singular countable


I know there are plenty of threads about any + singular countable. I believe this one is a little different.

There isn't a chair here.

If we don't want to use one of these:

Indeed there aren't any left / there is none left / There are none left

Can we say

Indeed there isn't any left.

Or should we say

Indeed there isn't one left.


Posted 2017-08-30T10:13:03.653

Reputation: 60

Semi-unrelated, but I would personally add a comma after each Indeed – Stephen S – 2017-08-30T18:34:11.397




  • There aren't any left.
  • There are none left.
  • There is none left.
  • None are left.
  • None is left.

All of those are correct. Most native speakers treat "none" as plural, though some insist that it ought to be singular. (See also and - the latter says, "It is sometimes held that none can only take a singular verb... There is little justification, historical or grammatical, for this view".)

Widely used by native speakers but not correct (or at least not standard English):

  • There isn't any left.

(Of course, this would be correct for a mass noun such as "butter", but not for a countable noun such as "chair".)

Correct but perhaps requiring further comment:

  • There isn't one left.

"There isn't one left" might seem to leave open the possibility that there's more than one left, rather than none left, although it'll probably be obvious from context what you mean. However, if you emphasise the word "one", it becomes idiomatic:

  • There isn't one left.
  • There isn't even one left.
  • There isn't a single one left.


Posted 2017-08-30T10:13:03.653

Reputation: 8 564


It would depend on what you are asking

Q: Are there any left?
A: Indeed, there aren't any left.


Q: Is there one left?
A: Indeed, there isn't one left.


Posted 2017-08-30T10:13:03.653

Reputation: 63 575

1"Indeed" usually means "yes", so these examples sound odd. "Indeed not" could work, but most people would find that "No" comes more naturally. – rjpond – 2017-08-30T21:03:17.473