Use this tag for questions about the usage of articles (e.g. a, an, and the).

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4
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0answers
331 views

Guide to English Articles [closed]

I'm looking for a full and complete guide to English articles like THE, A, AN, (none). Can anyone recommend me something like that? I'd like to finally learn this and never make a mistake again. ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Use (or non-use) of articles before abstract nouns

I know I have asked a similar question before but this time I have examples taken from COCA and they do puzzle me. I would love to hear explanations from native speakers. The following (incomplete) ...
1
vote
2answers
156 views

Why do prehistoric animals seem to lack articles?

Why do we say "this is a cat" or "this is a forty spotted pardalote" but "this is velociraptor" with no the or a?
4
votes
4answers
551 views

“Most” vs. “most of”

During most of history, humans were too busy to think about thought. Why is "most of history" correct in the above sentence? I could understand the difference between "Most of the people" and ...
2
votes
3answers
189 views

Choice of articles: the reduction/ a reduction /reduction

I am often confused about the use of articles before abstract nouns. Are the following three sentences all grammatically correct? If so, what differences are there, if any, in their meaning or nuance? ...
3
votes
2answers
304 views

Using articles before titles beginning with articles

What are the rules for the use of articles before titles beginning with articles? Which of the following sentences is correct? I went to the The New York Times office this morning. I went to The New ...
2
votes
3answers
323 views

“a” and “the” before time markers

For my linguistics course I was asked to explain the difference in meaning of the following: 1. I would like to have lunch with you on Friday 2. I would like to have lunch with you on a Friday ...
4
votes
5answers
156 views

Room Temperature: Article “A” or Not?

Below, “room temperature” takes the article “a” in one case but not the other. “Temperature” seems like a countable noun, so why no article in the first case? What is the grammar that is working here? ...
0
votes
1answer
97 views

“Is there a best X?” — why “a” if it's the superlative degree?

Which of the following is grammatical? Is there a best school? Is there the best school? I'm sure that the first one is right. But why?
10
votes
4answers
936 views

Why did Obama use “a” in “… to hear a King proclaim that …”

From Obama's second inaugural speech: We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths – that all of us are created equal – is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our ...
1
vote
1answer
917 views

Is “make no mistake” a mistake?

Is "make no mistake" proper grammar? Isn't "no" being used as a quantifier? Aren't quantified nouns supposed to be plural when the quantity is none? For example, I was taught to say, "one egg" and ...
1
vote
1answer
421 views

“Seems like an overkill” vs. “seems like overkill” [closed]

I’m wondering if an article is used with the word overkill: Something seems like an overkill (to me). Something seems like overkill (to me). Which is grammatical?
0
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2answers
128 views

“This is a song by Lady Gaga” or “this is the song by Lady Gaga”? [closed]

Which article is appropriate in the blank below, a or the? — What are you singing? I've heard the song many times. — This is __ song by Lady Gaga.
0
votes
1answer
174 views

What kind of noun is 'splurge'?

I was reading a grammar book the other day, it was mentioned to omit articles "before names of substances and abstract nouns (i.e uncountable nouns)." The nouns splurge and howler are abstract nouns ...
0
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4answers
216 views

Why is there no article in “The Child is father of the man”?

The Rainbow by William Wordsworth: My heart leaps up when I behold A Rainbow in the sky: So was it when my life began; So is it now I am a man; So be it when I shall grow old, Or let me ...
3
votes
2answers
249 views

Sometimes the article precedes the noun and not the adjective

I have a question that baffled me for a while now, and I'd be a happier person for an answer. Why in sentences such as It's not that big a deal. And He was as nice a friend as you were. Or ...
5
votes
1answer
307 views

How do I refer to two things together that have different adjectives?

I want to express these two facts: there is a front view; and there is a side view. Which of the following are valid ways of referring to the two views together? a front and side view; a ...
1
vote
1answer
220 views

“In a book store near my school” vs. “in the book store near my school” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are there any simple rules for article usage (“a” vs “the” vs none) Which article should I use in the following situations? There is only one book store near my ...
2
votes
1answer
273 views

Why do we need an indefinite article in the sentence “The price is **an incredible 50,000 dollars**”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: ‘A[n] * [number] [plural]’ Construction Why do we need an indefinite article in the sentence "The price is an incredible 50,000 dollars"? "An" is singular, "dollars" is ...
0
votes
3answers
2k views

is article “an” before the noun “hour” acceptable? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should I use “a” versus “an” in front of a word beginning with the letter h? I have seen many authors uses "an" before "hour" like "an hour" some times. Please ...
4
votes
1answer
350 views

Using “a” in the title of a scientific paper

Is it OK, to use indefinite article in the title of a paper? Should it be omitted? Or even replaced by the definite article? Here is the title: "A Fuzzy Event for a Set of Events".
2
votes
0answers
89 views

Semantic question about the definite article [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is there a usage of “the” that indicates one out of a group of many? The definite article is used when the referent is “uniquely identifiable” to the hearer, as many ...
0
votes
1answer
87 views

Should I refer to North Koreans and South Koreans “same people” or “the same people”?

Are North Koreans and South Koreans "same people" or "the same people"? Which is correct: the same or just same, and why?
-1
votes
3answers
150 views

“Is called” + article?

What is the best way to define a new object by using "Something is called [name]"? I have seen all three posibilities, that is: Fruit of this tree is called apple. Fruit of this tree is ...
0
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0answers
40 views

“a” vs. “an” when the following word is in a bracket [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “A/An” preceding a parenthetical statement Let's say I send a text to someone saying: Can you get me a coffee? Over here, I use a as the following word doesn't ...
4
votes
4answers
607 views

Why “the” in “Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog)”? [closed]

When reading the title of the book, we don't know what three men it is talking about so there is no/indefinite article (the same with "a boat"). But why is there "the Dog" instead of "a Dog"? We don't ...
0
votes
1answer
347 views

Use of the article “the” with proper nouns

I'm writing a leaflet for children from primary schools who will visit our school. Is it correct to write: the "amerigo vespucci" school is waiting for you!!!! Is the use of the definite ...
-1
votes
3answers
540 views

What article should be used in such sentences?

What article should be used in the following sentence? He was English by [a/the/] blood. I feel there should be a zero article here, but I was taught that the zero article is impossible in ...
0
votes
1answer
211 views

The reasoning behind omitting “the” in “I'm (the) president of the United States.”

I understand you can say either I'm president of the United States. or I'm the president of the United States. I also know of a rule that you may omit "the" in front of a title, position, ...
2
votes
3answers
180 views

Use of article 'the' before author's name

Is is correct to write: 'Author Martin Amis describes...', or should we use the article 'the' in front of 'author'? Thank you very much in advance
1
vote
2answers
116 views

Is “a” mandatory in “I'm a whole new (Name)”?

Let's say, your name is Kate and you say "I'm a whole new Kate!" Now, can you drop "a" and say "I'm whole new Kate!"? Or is it mandatory to keep it?
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3answers
1k views

Do we say “I'm going to meet my friends in a park” or “I'm going to meet my friends in the park”? [closed]

I've had an argument recently whether one should say "I'm going to meet my friends in a park" or "I'm going to meet my friends in the park"? Assume that the other speaker doesn't know what park is ...
0
votes
2answers
273 views

Why do we use an article for “the mind,” “the heart,” or “the soul”? [closed]

A student of mine came across a website titled "Music for the Mind" and asked why we use a definite article. We are not talking about a specific mind. We also use definite articles to talk about "The ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

“Planning for next year” vs. “planning for the next year”

I would like to start planning for next year. In the above sentence, there is no definite article before the words next year. Should it be present, as in the following sentence which sounds far ...
0
votes
1answer
249 views

Can you use an article in front of the word “software”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why don’t we use the indefinite article with ‘software’? Can you say "a software" or "the software"? E.g. That is how you use the software.
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2answers
476 views

“The” before acronyms and abbreviations

I saw several posts about usage of "the" before acronyms, but I still haven't found any answer on my question. Let's say I developed a System for Definitions' Retrieval (SDR). So, should I refer to it ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

When can you use 'a same'?

When will we use 'a same', instead of 'the same'? Is it grammatical to say: We wore a same hat yesterday. We talked to a same teacher everyday.
-1
votes
2answers
217 views

Do I need to add an article before the weekend?

When I’m going to have a weekend, do I have to say “It’s weekend.” Or do I need to add ‘a’ or ‘the’ in front of the weekend?
0
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5answers
2k views

“Is of the view that” vs. “is of a view that” [closed]

Is there any significant difference in the meanings of sentence 1 and sentence 2 below? Mr. Jones is of a view that the project is unnecessary. Mr. Jones is of the view that the project is ...
2
votes
2answers
214 views

Charles Dickens: “It was the best of times…” [closed]

It was the best of times… How to understanding this usage without using "the" (i.e. instead of "the best of the times")? How can we apply the same usage in everyday conversation? E.g. should we ...
2
votes
4answers
370 views

“has a wrong format” or “has the wrong format”

If I want to say that the content of a file is not right, should I say: The file has a wrong format or The file has the wrong format I am not referring to file extensions. I am referring ...
2
votes
4answers
305 views

Nouns and determiners

Are singular non-proper countable nouns always preceded by a determiner (a, the, some, any, this, that)? ORIGINAL QUESTION: "Dose singular no-proper [Are singular common] nouns always preceded by ...
4
votes
4answers
193 views

“king of” or “the king of”

Which is correct? I am king of the world. I am the king of the world. Additionally, which would be the better choice, if I wanted to use the expression "king" to signify dominance in a ...
1
vote
2answers
113 views

“Follow evolution” vs. “follow the evolution”

Is the article the needed in the following sentence and why? Want to follow [the] evolution of the project?
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Indefinite article for words starting with “E” An/A Ensemble [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should I use “a” vs “an”? which article should be used with the words which start with the letter "E" such as "Ensemble" ?
0
votes
1answer
1k views

Repetition of articles in a sentence

The following sentences use more than one adjective for a single noun. She has a black and white cat. It implies that the person involved here has only one cat which is black and white coloured. ...
1
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2answers
289 views

What weather! What a pity! - phrases with and without article - why? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are there any simple rules for article usage (“a” vs “the” vs none) ‘… the weather’ vs. ‘… weather’ “Bad weather doesn't exist” vs. “The bad weather doesn't exist” ...
1
vote
2answers
293 views

Should I use an article with the word “part”?

I’ve noticed that some people use an article with the word “part” and the bulk of them does not (at least at some web pages I skimmed through). Which is the correct variant? I think that parts of ...
2
votes
6answers
807 views

“Suffer from a headache” vs. “suffer from the headache” [closed]

I am not sure which article to use in the following context: She has been suffering from a headache. She has been suffering from the headache. Please clear up my doubt.
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Difference between 'than others' and 'than the others' [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Incriminating others vs. Incriminating the others: Is this sentence correct? When should one of these be preferred over another for sentences of the form "A is different ...