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

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4
votes
1answer
45 views

What's the rule behind the use of the articles to refer to something in general?

I'm very confused about the use of English articles in generalisations with singular countable nouns. I read in a grammar book that in case of the word 'man' - the rule is that, if you want to say ...
3
votes
2answers
10k views

“On grounds of” vs. “on the grounds of”

Here's the sentence from Wall Street Journal: ...eight individuals have been deported on grounds of national security. Instead of this, if one says, ...eight individuals have been deported ...
2
votes
2answers
60 views

How to use articles with 'positions'?

Lets's say we have a simple sentence about a fact that always (almost) applies, such as: 'Birds make their nests on the trees'. There is no article before 'Birds' as it is a generalisation. What ...
1
vote
1answer
66 views

out of the reach or out of reach

I have seen the following on different products. Keep out of the reach of children. Keep out of reach of children. What is the difference between those two statements?
-1
votes
0answers
28 views

Red Moon in Germany [on hold]

I currently live in Berlin, Germany. I started to have interest in watching the sky lately and all these things about energy and the world and nature. I'm looking for a good place in Berlin or near ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

omitted or not for “the number of ”

I don't know if the word "number" before "bananas" of the following sentence could be omitted? "The number of apples is 8 and bananas is 3" or "The number of apples is 8 and the number of bananas is ...
-2
votes
1answer
23 views

Article usage in “with + (a/an) + adjective + noun” [on hold]

What is the best formulation, and eventually what are the differences, between: This task can be done without a human annotation. This task can be done without    human annotation.
1
vote
2answers
60 views

Is “are an” grammatically correct? [duplicate]

When I first learn about the present form of 'be', I was told that: Use 'are' with plural noun. And when I first studies articles, I was told that: Use 'a' / 'an' with single noun. So I ...
71
votes
14answers
27k views

When should I use “a” vs “an”?

In the following example, is it appropriate to use a or an as the indefinite article, and why? He ate __ green apple. I know that in the case of just "apple", it would be "an apple," but I've ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Usage of preposition 'in'

Which is the correct form of the following caption for a photo: Night beauty in St Petersburg St Petersburg night beauty Or does the right sentence have to be "A night beauty in St ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

The use of article when an element is defined before

Assuming that a function f is defined, which one of the following statements is correct with respect to the use of article for "call"? I know that i is already introduced, but how about the call? ...
1
vote
2answers
89 views

Genitive: with or without “the” [closed]

I would like to know which variant is correct: "Decimal expansion of the first generalized Euler's constant" "Decimal expansion of first generalized Euler's constant" "Decimal expansion of the ...
1
vote
1answer
45 views

Non-use of Determiners

I have reviewed several related posts here but am still quite confused with the use of determiners. Say, in this sentence - "They reviewed the forms again to ensure completeness and accuracy." What ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

in a green shirt, in green shirt, with a green shirt or with green shirt? [closed]

Suppose you want to describe a stranger in the distance to a friend standing next to you. The stranger wears a green shirt. Which is the best way to describe her? Look at that girl in a green ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

“What a beautiful day” or “What the beautiful day”? And “why”?

Although we know that day which we are talking about, why don't we say "What the beautiful day!" instead of "What a beautiful day!" ? In addition, a friend of mine explained the following, but in my ...
0
votes
0answers
14 views

Is 'the' necessary when a noun is explained in a same sentence? [duplicate]

I know that definite article is used when a noun is already known in the context. But I'm not sure with the usage of definite article when I described something explicitly but it hasn't been ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

A user vs the user - the 2nd is more common? why? [closed]

Why do we use "the" with "user" and not "a", even through we're not talking about a particular user, but about any user? For example: When the user comes to the home page, they should see this link. ...
0
votes
1answer
18 views

“Analysis of…” or “An analysis of…” - how should I start a title of an academic paper? [closed]

I'm writing an academic essay and I'm wondering whether I should start like "An analysis of sorting algorithms" or "Analysis of sorting algorithms", the question is about the article "an" versus no ...
0
votes
4answers
50 views
0
votes
2answers
47 views

Is it correct to say “a new” or “the new”? [closed]

That's the whole question. Example: I'm creating a new version of the program Is there a set of rules one should follow? Thank you!
-1
votes
3answers
54 views

Indefinite article before 'god' [closed]

Here's a phrase from a song: There's nothing a god can give to me that I can't give to myself I put my beliefs in the things I believe and a god can take care of himself It might seem kind ...
-1
votes
0answers
18 views

Usage of articles [duplicate]

I am learning articles in grammar. Why do certain nouns take more than one article at times? Example: He is an english professor. It's because of the english people.
0
votes
2answers
61 views

What is the pronounciation of “the” before the vowel “e”? [duplicate]

How do you pronounce the vowel in the article "the" when used before "evil"? (American English)
-2
votes
0answers
28 views

…express a need vs …express the need vs …express our/my need

Darron expressed a need for more personal space. Darron expressed the need for more personal space. Darron expressed his need for more personal space. When to use definite article, ...
-2
votes
3answers
47 views

“Visitor” instead of “Dish” [closed]

I have two small questions. I'm translating a gastronomy website and the original text sometimes refer to the dish as the visitor. For example: The next visitor of our table was mackerel with ...
-1
votes
0answers
41 views

Why names of dances are used with the article 'the' but names of sports are not?

I am learning English and I am trying to figure out historical reasons of using 'the' and 'a'. I hope that native speakers can explain me some of them. For example: history of the tango the waltz ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Specific type of something vs. things in general

Does anyone can give essential difference between situations when things used in general and as specific type of something ? For definite and zero articles accordingly. Murphy (fourth edition) give ...
-1
votes
1answer
12 views

Using articles in a prompt

There is a prompt in a program What is the correct form of it? Enter height of a triangle Enter a height of a triangle Enter the height of a triangle Enter the height of the triangle
4
votes
1answer
115 views

Can we omit the definite article, *the*, in front of two musical instruments?

My sentence is He plays the piano & the violin. Is it correct to say He plays the piano & violin?
0
votes
1answer
51 views

“Both the drivers” versus “both drivers” [closed]

Context: there were two drivers in a single vehicle driving along a test track. Then the vehicle overturned and the drivers were injured. Which sentence is correct: “The vehicle overturned injuring ...
6
votes
3answers
432 views

When to say “a proof”, “the proof” and just “proof”?

My friend asked to check his work, and he had written: I think Asimov is proof that being prolific is at least as valuable as being talented. He writes simply is proof. Did he write correctly ...
-1
votes
0answers
12 views

Question about usage of the article “the” [duplicate]

Although I have learned English for over 20 years, using articles is still confusing for me. Sometimes I do'nt understand why the is used like in these cases: Shoot for the stars -> This is ...
1
vote
3answers
160 views

Why is it “a President” when it's clear to anybody that it's refering to the present President? [closed]

The New York Times (January 20, 2015) carries an editorial board article under the headline, “At the State of the Union, a President outgunned in Congress is still combative.” It begins with the ...
1
vote
0answers
45 views

Indefinite article before an adjective in form [number]-[something]

Which one of these is correct? We use two-stage compilation process. We use a two-stage compilation process. The second looks more formally correct, but feels strange. Perhaps this is better? ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

Is it correct to say “via a”?

Is it considered proper English to say something like this? I called her via a telephone. Or should the indefinite article be omitted entirely? I called her via telephone. If the ...
0
votes
0answers
26 views

“The Internet” vs “Internet” [duplicate]

I've read about Articles: THE is called a definite article. "Definite" means "specific". A and AN are called indefinite articles. "Indefinite" means "not specific". Use A (AN) when you are ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

“At the time” versus “at that time”

If I want to say that during the accident there were no passengers, how do I phrase it? There were no passengers at the time. There were no passengers at that time.
2
votes
1answer
263 views

Is it acceptable to say “the why”?

Is it proper English to say, The why? An example: I need to find out the why. To me, the, doesn't belong in this sentence. Note: TV personality Dr. Oz often says "the why".
1
vote
2answers
69 views

When “and” connects two subjects, can we remove the article pertaining to the second subject?

When “and” connects two subjects, can we remove the article pertaining to the second subject (as in the following example)? Original sentence: The implementation of the algorithms on the CPU and ...
-2
votes
1answer
38 views

with a high density or with high density? [closed]

I wrote this sentence. We study large-scale graphs with a high density or with high density? Which one is right? Thanks in advance!
0
votes
0answers
24 views

Using an indefinite article with ability

Which is correct? His artwork is outstanding. He has a natural ability. or His artwork is outstanding. He has natural ability.
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Which is the correct article here? [duplicate]

1 An n-dimensional generalisation OR 2 A n-dimensional generalisation. I would like to say the first is correct but my friend insists the second. Which is the correct way?
1
vote
0answers
34 views

“In the Philippines”, or “In the US” sounds okay, but why not “In the Japan”, or “In the China”? [duplicate]

Random thought earlier. I am basing my question on my memory of what seems to be normally used, but I am unsure of the actual correct grammar usage. Which is correct, and if one is wrong, what is ...
4
votes
1answer
78 views

We did it at exactly the right time vs We did it at the exactly right time.

I know the first example is correct and I'm pretty sure the second is incorrect, but I wonder why. So, we can say "I saw an extremely angry dog", but not "I saw extremely an angry dog." When do we ...
-1
votes
1answer
119 views

Use of “THE” article in passage

In some passage, I've noticed that the "the" article is used before some words at the first time but it is not used at the second time before the words. As example, In this passage: You ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

“A group leader” or “the group leader”?

When I have an expression comprising two nouns does the article (a/an/the) refer to the first or to the second one? E.g. when talking about some group (we introduced it, there's only one), we would ...
1
vote
2answers
37 views

Should a definite article be used when referring to a line of an algorithm

In scientific articles an article is usually omitted when referring to figures, tables, etc. and a capital letter is used. For example I would state: "The data are shown in Figure 1." I have an ...
1
vote
1answer
393 views

Reading of the article “an” preceding quotations

Speakers often add “quote” or “quote, unquote” before quotations. But when a quotation is preceded by the article “an”, how should that article be pronounced? As I understand, the choice between “a” ...
2
votes
1answer
94 views

Articles - When don't we use them? [closed]

Why don't we use any articles before the countable noun "chairman" in the following sentence? Potts was appointed chairman of the education committee. or Camera was invented by X. I ...
0
votes
2answers
50 views

Mars orbits Sun [duplicate]

Why do we call the star in our solar system "The Sun" when all other celestial bodies are addressed simply as Jupiter, Neptune, or Sagittarius A Star? Ex: The Saturn has many rings. Incorrect Ex: ...