The plural of straw is straws.
1. A mass of stalks or stems of grain.
2. A tube made from plastic, glass, or paper, used to drink from a container.
Straw is a word that has two distinct meanings, and as a result, it can be a bit confusing when trying to figure out how to form its plural.
The first definition refers to the individual or mass of stalks or stems of grain, such as wheat or barley, while the second definition is a tube made from plastic, glass, or paper, used to drink from a container.
In this article, we will clarify the rules for forming the plural of straw for both definitions.
The plural of straw, when referring either to the drinking utensil or to the individual stalks or stems of grain, is straws.
This follows the standard English rule for forming the plural of a noun by simply adding an "s" to the end of the word.
When referring to the mass of stalks or stems of grain, straw is usually considered an uncountable noun.
For example, "The field was filled with straw after the harvest."
However, when referring to individual stalks of straw, it becomes a countable noun, such as "He picked some straws and examined them closely."
When referring to the tube used for drinking, straw is always considered a countable noun, as in "Can you pass me a straw for my drink?"
"The farmer used straw to line the chicken coop".
"She sipped her cocktail through a straw from the side of the pool".
"He sat on a bale of straw and watched the sunset".
Plural (meaning stalks or stems):
"They loaded the truck with straws to use for animal bedding".
"The workers spread out the straws across the field to dry in the sun".
"The straws poked out of the bale left in the corner of the barn".
Plural (meaning drinking utensil)
"The server brought out straws for everyone to use with their drinks".
"The container of straws on the table was almost empty".
"She threw away the used straws in the trash".
The two different meanings of the word actually connected since in the 1800s drinking straws were made from the dried stems of cereal grasses and used as a DIY tool for sipping drinks.
These days in an effort to curb plastic use, many plastic straws are being dropped by companies.