Is an article needed before a variable with a name, like, variable Z, in a text? If you give a variable a name, it becones like a man, say, named John - and I am yet to see 'the man John'. But I often see 'the radius r', 'a distance d'. Is it correct?


You are correct that the article is not needed.

The noun (radius etc.) is used as an appositive to name another noun (e.g. r) that is right next to it.

(This question is a duplicate of this one on ELL.)

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