Much, many: difference and how to use

How to use much and many

  • We use much with uncountable nouns.
  • We use many with countable nouns.
  • We use much and many in questions and negative sentences.

Here’s the rule in more detail, and with some examples:

Much, many: rules


before uncountable nouns in questions and negative sentences:

  • How much time do we have?
  • We need to stop – we don't have much petrol. [negative]


before plural countable nouns in questions and negative sentences:

  • Are there many restaurants in the town?
  • He's unhappy because he doesn't have many friends. [negative]

How much vs. how many

How much money do you have?
[money = uncountable]

How many children do you have?
[children = countable]

Here are some more examples with much and many:

Much, many: examples

uncountable: much

  • He works in a factory so he doesn't earn much money.

  • Is there much unemployment in this area?

  • It's very dry in this region: we don't get much rain.

countable: many

  • It's a very small town so there aren't many shops there.
  • The job interview was easy: they didn't ask me many questions.
  • Did you take many photographs when you were in London?

Want to practise this grammar? Try our 7-lesson course 'Expressing Quantity'.

Courses are free for registered users.

Show me more