Learning a new language is arguably the best way to broaden your horizons if you are looking at any kind of job dealing with public service or global politics. Interpersonal relationships between countries and governments are greatly improved when people are able to communicate clearly, and if you learn a language that is rarely spoken or known, you make yourself invaluable to your employer. However, learning a language can be difficult because it can be hard to keep track of all the rules that different languages follow in their grammar.
The English language is considered one of the most notorious languages for keeping track of which rules are common and which rules are broken often, especially when it comes to plural nouns. People who learn English as a second or even third language struggle to remember spellings, verb tenses, singular and plural subject/verb agreements, and several other common grammar mistakes.
In this article, let’s explore the noun “money,” learn its proper use, how to create its plural form, look for its synonyms, and learn its etymology and context.
Your writing, at its best
Compose bold, clear, mistake-free, writing with Grammarly's AI-powered writing assistant
To first understand a word, its history, and how to use it properly, it is important to first define what it actually means. According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, the word money is defined as “something generally accepted as a medium of exchange, a measure of value, or a means of payment” or “wealth reckoned in terms of money.” In total, there are twelve different accepted definitions of the word money, all related to wealth and/or currency.
Part of what makes English such a difficult language to master is that no matter where you look, there are rules, and then there are exceptions to those rules. For example, the common rule for making the past tense in English is to add “-d” or “-ed” to a verb to give it the past tense. For example, the verb cook becomes cooked, and the verb bake becomes baked. In both situations, you either add the “-ed” or the “-d” suffix, and the word is past tense.
Many plurals follow a similar rule: to create a plural, add “-es” or just “s” to the current word. However, the word money has a somewhat irregular plural form. When a word ends in “y,” sometimes the letter is treated as a consonant and sometimes a bowl, which affects what the plural word would be. To create the plural of money, you actually remove the “e” and the “y” and add “-ies” to the end. So instead of the plural form of money being “moneys.” it is “monies.”
You also want to avoid the common error of adding an apostrophe. That being said, in the modern American usage, there is a common idiom that you “want to get your money’s worth,” meaning that you want to get everything that you pay for.
The word money is actually both a countable and an uncountable noun (or mass noun), meaning that you can have both “many monies” and “large sums of money.” The difference is that the countable noun of “money” is individual kinds of currency, and the other describes a quantity of a single form of currency. For example, you wouldn’t say that you have “a money.”
How Do You Use the Word Monies?
The word monies falls under a very specific use case, and it is used to describe a context in which you have several different types of currency, or you have one currency in different contexts or amounts. For example, you could have monies in USD and the British Pound. Or, in another context, you could have paper money, credit cards, and investment accounts, all varying types of monies and income holding different amounts of money. This remains the same in both British English and American English.
The History and Origin of the Word
One of the best ways to understand a word is to learn where it came from. A word’s etymology can reveal a lot about the changes a word has gone through to get to where it is today in modern English. According to EtymOnline.com, the word money originated in the Old English sometime in the middle of the thirteenth century with the word “monie,” which is translated “funds, means, anything convertible into money.” The Latin word that this word came from was “moneta,” meaning “place for coining money, coined money, mintage.”
Like many nouns in modern English, the word actually originates from ancient Latin and Greek by way of other European languages such as Italian, Spanish, and French. This is part of the reason for its irregularity is that it is based on so many other languages.
Examples of the Word in Context
Another great way to learn how to use a word is to explore the word being used correctly. Either reading the word in its proper context or hearing someone else use it in conversation. Here are some common example sentences with the word money (and its plural form) in context:
“Have you checked your wallet yet today? I think you dropped a lot of money on the ground earlier, and I wasn’t sure.”
“Hey, do you have the monies together yet for the acquisition? I know you mentioned having to shift some stuff around from different sources.”
“The money was acquired via a bank transfer between his bank and your credit union. You should have the funds in your account within 36 hours.”
Synonyms for Money
Finally, to really solidify a word into your vocabulary, it is useful to explore words with similar or same definitions. The more words you know that can fit into a specific context, the easier it will be to remember which ones to use. Here are some synonyms for the word money:
Currency, a general term that describes money in its most basic, minted form
Stocks, a form of money that is also part ownership in a country
Cash, a term used to describe money in its physical form
Banknotes, a term used to describe when money is given to someone by a bank
At the end of the day, terms and colloquialisms that you use for your audience are all specific to them. If a word seems to be lost on your audience, try a different one. But, by reading this article, you should be prepared to use the word money in any context, written or spoken. Good luck!
Kevin Miller is a growth marketer with an extensive background in Search Engine Optimization, paid acquisition and email marketing. He is also an online editor and writer based out of Los Angeles, CA. He studied at Georgetown University, worked at Google and became infatuated with English Grammar and for years has been diving into the language, demystifying the do's and don'ts for all who share the same passion! He can be found online here.