Determiners are noun-modifiers that convey the reference of a noun without delineating its characteristics [as adjectives do].

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

45
votes
8answers
16k views

Are there any simple rules for choosing the definite vs. indefinite (vs. none) article?

I can’t for the life of me figure out where to use a and where to use the — and where there is no article at all. Is there a simple rule of thumb to memorize? The standard rule you always hear: “...
63
votes
2answers
319k views

“Which” vs. “what” — what's the difference and when should you use one or the other?

Most of the time one or the other feels better, but every so often, "which" vs. "what" trips me up. So, what's the exact difference and when should you use one or the other?
32
votes
6answers
115k views

Which is correct, “neither is” or “neither are”?

Bob: "Can I set the font color? Can I customize the text?" Frank: "Neither of these options is available. Sorry!" Is "neither is" always correct or should one use "neither are" in some cases and ...
10
votes
6answers
1k views

A battery of tests is/are

This is from a recent article: He was rushed to the hospital immediately and a battery of tests was conducted. Now shouldn't it be He was rushed to the hospital immediately and a battery ...
7
votes
4answers
5k views

Difference between 'all' and 'all the'

I came across people using all the in sentences instead of all. Select the type of user to view all the users of that type. All the users of the selected role are displayed. I usually strike ...
50
votes
9answers
107k views

“A few” vs. “few”

I have few friends. I have a few friends. I thought "few" means just one, two or even none. "A few" typically means more than two. However it seems to me some people say "few" when they really ...
32
votes
9answers
34k views

Equivalent of “both” when referring to three or more items?

What would be the correct word to use when referring to three or more items, in the same manner as the word both? For example, using two words, with the word both: "There are several ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there a clear delineation between the usages of 'this' and 'that' in American English?

One of my linguistics professors speaks English as a second language, and remarked that she never knows which of the two is appropriate. Given a list of examples, all native speakers in the classroom ...
7
votes
1answer
971 views

Is “any” also used with plurals?

I found on a research paper the following statement: Is any particular images satisfying the requirements ? I thought any can only be used with singular terms. So I was surprised when I've seen "...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

“Employee” in the phrase “employee ID” is a determiner, not an adjective—right?

I am a software developer with a bit of a linguistic slant. We were recently given some training on how to name database fields and were told to avoid adjectives in names. Then we were given an ...
5
votes
3answers
10k views

“… things like this.” vs. “… things like that.”

Yesterday on talk radio an interviewee speaking about Sudanese Northerner's being forced into the mountains and away from their farmlands by the Sudanese Army said the result was: The men would ...
3
votes
2answers
94 views

'A / One / At least one student entered the room.' Are these the same? (truth-conditionally)

I just wonder if the two following sentences are truth-conditionally the same. Sentence 1 essentially means there existed a student who entered the room, and this situation includes two, three or more ...
3
votes
1answer
343 views

“All the good people” vs. “all of the good people”

I've heard both of these before. All the good people All of the good people Are they both correct?
3
votes
2answers
3k views

“Any” or “some” in various questions?

I'm wondering why I always hear "some" in questions, although according to English grammar there should always be "any". At least the one I'm looking at uses "some". For example: Why are some ...
2
votes
2answers
8k views

The use of any with plural/singular words

I always thought with "any" I should use the plural, but on the internet I can find both: It can be found in any book. It can be found in any books Do you have any books? It can be said in any ...
7
votes
4answers
56k views

“Many people” vs. “much people” — which one should be used?

There's so many people in here! There's so much people here! Which one should be used, and why?
17
votes
4answers
41k views

“Its” as a Possessive Pronoun

Since its can be both determiner possessive pronoun and nominal possessive pronoun, an example of its as determiner possessive pronoun would be: We saved this question for last because of its ...
13
votes
4answers
3k views

New Oxford American Dictionary describes “the” as an adjective

When I look at the definition given from the Mac OS X Dictionary (I have set American English as interface language, and the dictionary used is then the New Oxford American Dictionary), I read: ...
11
votes
2answers
283 views

Can predicative complements not be bare noun phrases in English? That is, are clauses such as “I am student” incorrect?

In Chapter 4 of the book A Student’s Introduction to English Grammar, written by Rodney Huddleston of the University of Queensland and Geoffrey K. Pullum of the University of Edinburgh and published ...
9
votes
2answers
3k views

“Any” with countable nouns in questions

I have seen "is “any” also used with plurals", which explains that any can be used with singular, plural, and uncountable nouns. However, I want to ask specifically about questions. E.g.:...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Is “each” an adverb, pronoun, determiner, or what else? [duplicate]

What do Online Dictionaries Say? Cambridge Dictionaries Online says each is used as an adverb in the following examples: There are five leaflets – please take one of each. Each of the brothers ...
6
votes
3answers
9k views

Can “another” be used with plural nouns provided periods or measurements don’t count?

Merriam-Webster says about another the following: being one more in addition to one or more of the same kind —http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/another However, I come across such ...
14
votes
1answer
19k views

What are the rules about using 'half of' with plural nouns?

Here are some sentences with 'half of' and plural nouns that I consider to be well-formed: Half of all films are a waste of celluloid. Half of users surveyed said they preferred the old product. ...
4
votes
4answers
7k views

“Both which” or “both of which”

"This can be done using the technique of Peters, and using the technique of Matthews, both which involve mathematics" Having searched both which and both of which in Google, it appears both of which ...
3
votes
2answers
285 views

'The average person' or 'an average person'?

Which one is correct, or are both of them fine? "It would take the average person 10 days to read this novel" Or "It would take an average person 10 days to read this novel"
3
votes
3answers
6k views

What is the difference between “any” or ”every”?

Consider: The system is deterministic if any two runs produce the same result. Can I say every instead of any in every such sentence?
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there a difference between articles and determiners?

I have heard the, a, and an referred to as both articles and determiners. Do these two terms mean the same thing, or are there some differences between them? Can a word be an article but not a ...
0
votes
1answer
494 views

“User's expertise” or “user expertise”?

What is the correct form when referring to the expertise of a user (e.g. in programming, writing)? user's expertise user expertise
-2
votes
1answer
71 views

I'm having a question OR I'm having one question - Which sounds better? [on hold]

Can anyone please tell me, what would be a nicer way to ask a single question to a project manager or a team leader? I'm having a question OR I'm having one question. Which one is preferable?
6
votes
5answers
4k views

Use of determiners as adjectives

In a grammar book that I'm reading, an adjective is defined as: A word that modifies a noun or a pronoun. (To modify is to limit or point out or describe: that book; another chance; the blue ...
5
votes
3answers
16k 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.
4
votes
1answer
782 views

Determiner vs. Determinative

In the Cambridge Grammar of the English Language, Huddleston and Pullum use the term "determinative" for the lexical category of words like the, etc. And they use "determiner" for the grammatical ...
3
votes
1answer
180 views

When may adjectives precede determiners? (E.g. too difficult a task)

The expression too difficult a task sounds a little pompous, but it doesn't sound ungrammatical. According to my folk-beliefs about English grammar, determiners precede adjectives. However, the ...
2
votes
3answers
355 views

What should I use between “triple” vs. “all”?

If I have 2 pens and I want to say all of them are green, I can say "Both of them are green" but if I have 3 pens should I use "Triple of them are green" or "All of them are green"?
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Grammar questions on the usage of “some” and “some of the” [closed]

I am correcting a short journal writes up from my student, who is from Korea and notice that I am so lacking of grammar knowledge in explaining to her why it is wrong in her sentence. Below is one ...
1
vote
3answers
313 views

I don't know which boy?

Is it correct to say: I don't know which boy you meet. For me which here makes sense but grammatically I think there is something wrong by using which to refer to the boy.
1
vote
2answers
29k views

What are the grammatical rules for use of “these”, “those”, and “them”?

I am unclear of the use of [these|those] objects. I am unsure when to use [these|those|them]. Please someone help me tell me which is correct in the previous sentences. This is not a dupe of What&#...
0
votes
1answer
8k views

“These stuff” vs. “this stuff” [closed]

I wrote “I know all these stuff; I don’t have to go over them again” in my writing-exam paper and the teacher corrected it to read, “I know all this stuff; I don’t have to go over it again.” The ...