What should it be? One of the cars or car? One of the cars or car is or are?
Here are two tricks to help you remember how to use “one of” correctly.
Memory Trick 1
The “one of” phrase is always followed by a plural noun or pronoun.
An easy trick is to remember that you are talking about one subject out of many belonging to the same set/type.
One of the girls …
One of the towns …
One of your songs …
One of the concepts …
One of them …
One of those books …
Memory Trick 2
“One of” is always followed by a singular verb. Remembering that you are talking about one thing — singular — will help you to use the phrase correctly.
One of the boys is responsible for this mess.
One of those towns is hosting this year’s flower show.
Our patron is one of the biggest philanthropists.
The above trick works when “one of” is your subject.
You may come across cases where “one of the X” means “anyone”.
Ask one of the boys who hang out together after school. (Can be read as: Ask any one of the boys who hang out together after school.)