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9
votes
2answers
785 views

Are there specific rules to build expressions with or without articles?

In English, there are lots of expressions built using articles like: at the station to the cinema play the piano have breakfast (no article) take a bath take a shower Are there specific rules or ...
9
votes
1answer
770 views

Omission of “the” in “elected him president” and “made captain”

Why is there no the before president and captain? They elected him president. She was made captain of the team.
12
votes
3answers
6k views

Why use “the” for oceans/seas/rivers etc. but not lakes?

Possibly two questions in here: Are these sentence constructions logical, and if they are, why are they different? I swam across the Ocmulgee River. I swam across the Pacific Ocean. I swam ...
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
231 views

Why isn’t the definite article used in “The commission commanded that work […] should cease”?

In this sentence: The commission commanded that work on the building should cease. Why isn't the used before the word work? It seems that the work is specified by on the building. Another ...
3
votes
3answers
843 views

Use of the definite article “the” before “church”

I was in a Teacher's selection for a school in my country, and one of the coordinators said that she heard a mistake from another teacher that was unacceptable. I tried to figure out why was that, but ...
-1
votes
3answers
572 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 ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

Why is “the” dropped in “I go to school by bus”?

Why is the dropped in "I go to school by bus"? Why isn't it "I go to the school by the bus" if both school and bus are countable? Does the rule that a countable noun must have an article have an ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

“Had a seafood dinner” or “had seafood dinner”? [closed]

Which sentence is correct? I had a seafood dinner last night. I had seafood dinner last night.
3
votes
5answers
424 views

Why use “at” in this way?

I always see signs such as Men at work or Children at play I was wondering why we use "at" in this way. Is it just a formal way of saying Men Working / Children Playing? Saying "At ...
0
votes
1answer
76 views

'In the event of fire' or 'in the event of a fire'?

In the event of fire,... In the event of a fire,... I see both variants ondifferent Web pages and I cannot understand which is correct. Could you please explain it to me.