Couple means two

Treat “couple” as plural when you mean two individuals, the experts advise, and you’ll avoid agreement problems. The couple were married in Dunn before they left on a honeymoon trip to Ahoskie. You would not write: The couple WAS married in Dunn before IT left on a honeymoon trip to Ahoskie.

“Couple” can be singular if you mean a unit. Each couple in the study group gives $20 toward an annual party at the Wagner in Clayton.

Here is the entry on couple in the American Heritage Book of English Usage online.

This article was originally posted by the Raleigh News & Observer, a subsidiary of The McClatchy Co.; is posted here to provide continuity; and is copyright © 2011 The News & Observer Publishing Company, which reserves the right to remove this post.