Though it may sound a very primitive question to native English speakers, the use of ‘article’ is always the greatest headache to me because we don’t have this part of speech in our language system (I don’t think Chinese language has it either).
I’ve vaguely learned the rules of articles in English grammar books, but am not really familiar with it.
So when I found the following sentence in the New York Times’ article (December 21), titled, “Looking for a Place to Die,” I was puzzled whether I can say “I have a wife/ She has a husband,” or "I have wife / She has husband."
The patient was a fairly young woman and she’d had cancer for as long as her youngest child had been alive. She had another child, too, a few years older, and a husband whose drawn eyes and tense frame bore the strain of trying to keep it all together. Extended family lived far away and couldn’t be brought closer. The husband and kids lived more than an hour’s drive from the hospital.
When I come across the phrase “She had another child and a husband, I felt like she had one of several husbands she had. Theoretically, you can’t have multiple husbands (or wives) at a time.
When you simply say “I have (she has) husband,” what article should I use, a, the, or non-article?
Which is correct, “I have a husband who keeps saying ‘I love you.’ to me," and “I have the husband who keeps saying ‘I love you.’ to me.”?
I’m asking this, because I still remember that I was told at English class of high school more than 60 years ago that the definite article should be used for antecedent (husband in this case) whenever followed by modifier (that) clause.