Is it absolutely necessary to use "the" or "his"before the word "illness" in the following sentence to make it correct?

Last winter Victor got such a serious infection that it took him two months to recover from illness.

  • 2
    We have a "canonical question" for this sort of query: Simple rules for articles. Adding an article changes the nature of the word illness here. – Andrew Leach Mar 6 '15 at 12:52
  • @Andrew: I agree that a determiner (the or his) changes the nature of the word illness, but I don't see any reasonable justification for leaving a determiner out in this sentence. Victor is not recovering from generic illness, which is what I think a lack of determiner would imply. – Peter Shor Mar 6 '15 at 13:16
  • So the sentece without "the" or "his" is gramatically correct? – user112808 Mar 6 '15 at 13:38
  • Both are grammatically correct (as the linked question shows). But the word illness changes slightly depending on whether the article is present or not. – Andrew Leach Mar 6 '15 at 14:08
  • Could you please specify how 'the illness' differs from 'illness' in that particular sentence. Thank you. – user112808 Mar 6 '15 at 14:26

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