Questions tagged [zero-article]

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Good, bad, ugly? - "with professional efficiency" vs "with a professional efficiency"

Is either wrong? What's your take on the difference? I'm writing my first story and have an editor who has been great. I'm going through their edits and changing my draft as per their suggestions. One ...
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2 votes
0 answers
32 views

Use of "authorities" without the definite article or a possessive pronoun

I have a question about the usage of "authorities" in the following sentence. The Kremlin threatened up to 15-year jail sentences for those who report what authorities determine to be false ...
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lacquer finish/a lacquer finish/the lacquer finish [article usage]

I've just read an article about lacquer finish (or should I say a lacquer finish here?), and the use of articles is a bit confusing. The headline uses the indefinite one, which is kind of clear ...
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2 answers
86 views

Zero article and some with uncountable nouns

For the last two days I have been trying to understand the concept of using some or zero article with uncountable nouns. I have searched on internet, read the relevant sections of some books but ...
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Articles usage and human organs [duplicate]

As far as I know, usage of general concepts allows the usage of a zero article. But what about the organs, such as liver, lungs, or brain? Is it acceptable to use them without an article in academic ...
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The definite article before dark, darkness, light

Why is there a definite article before the words darkness and light in the sentence below: But as is so often true, the darkness lingers longer than the light. And why is the expression in the dark/...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Can I use zero article before an acronym term?

I am writing a technical report describing how a machine system works. We call the system BLK-Engine, where BLK is the acronym of a long term. When we describe how it works, should I say: "BLK-...
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Definite or zero article in front of adjective

My linguistic instinct (for whatever it is worth to non-native writers) tells me that the sentence The French historiography ascribes to the first legendary king of Poldevia… "sounds" ...
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Omis­si­bil­ity of the defi­n­ite ar­ti­cle “the” be­fore at­tribu­tive mod­i­fiers of per­sonal names in Amer­i­can English

Are both in­clu­sion and omis­sion of the defi­n­ite ar­ti­cle the be­fore per­sonal names that have at­tribu­tive mod­i­fiers (nom­i­nal or ad­jec­ti­val or both) con­sid­ered gram­mat­i­cal in Amer­i­...
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1 answer
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Definite article in 'of phrases'

I feel it is very confusing when I see sentences such as this one in papers published in prestigious scientific journals (written by native speakers): 35S:ZPR2-GFP plants often showed termination ...
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2 answers
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Do I need an article with a job title?

which form is correct in the following paragraph? ...his training as an industrial engineer... ...his training as industrial engineer... The Scholarship in Petroleum’s program is certainly the best ...
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Why is there no article before "key" in "key amongst them being ..."?

Why is there no article before key in the sentence? There are however pressing challenges for both systems, key amongst them being the need for better IT skills on the part of students and teachers. ...
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2 answers
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Do we always use zero article before jobs, titles, honors?

Donald Trump, a 71 year old businessman, was chosen ____ President of the United States. The answer is zero article, and the justification is that we should use zero article before job, title and ...
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-1 votes
2 answers
280 views

Phone, a phone, or the phone [closed]

Which option is correct and why? I want to talk about smartphones in general. Phone is a distraction. A phone is a distraction. The phone is a distraction. Thanks!
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The number of (the) unemployed/super-rich/poor/dead/infected

'The + adjective' usually means 'adjective + people'. For example, the unemployed means 'unemployed people'. In this type of construction, you cannot remove the. But when the construction is ...
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1 answer
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Why is the article "the" not used in this sentences?

I don't understand why they wrote in the sentence below "swept away repressive dictators" instead of "swept away THE repressive dictators"? Any idea? "Some local pundits liken the protests with the ...
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Couture and canapé are just another Saturday night until you add a mask. [Why the singular 'canapé'?]

In an American TV show called 'Gossip Girl', here's a narration by Gossip Girl herself (YouTube video): Long ago, when European royals grew bored with palace balls they took a page from the peons, ...
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1 answer
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What are the criteria for allowing repeated bare NPs in coordinate structures?

The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language (Pages 409-410): 8.5 Restricted non-referential interpretations of bare NPs [...] This time, however, our concern is with bare NPs. We confine our ...
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2 answers
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Using a Way as a proper noun

I'm designing a pompous and pretentious poster for the way we work in our company. Let's call the company "Initech" for this discussion. I used the zero article, omitting "the", in the slogan "The ...
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4 votes
2 answers
354 views

Is 'president' in 'run for president' a bare role NP?

A Student's Introduction to English Grammar says: A bare role NP is a singular NP that is ‘bare’ in the sense of lacking the determiner which would elsewhere be required, and that denotes some kind ...
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"Architecture": Countable or Uncountable

Cambridge Dictionary lists "architecture" as uncountable noun. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/architecture noun [ U ] Thus, it shouldn't take indefinite article; it ...
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Why are article sometimes omitted with words such as "legendary" and "British"? [duplicate]

I noticed that the definite article is sometimes omitted with the word "legendary": A collaboration between legendary game designer Richard Garfield and Valve, Artifact offers the deepest ...
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2 answers
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Missing "the" - on the official page without any reason

From the official Autodesk page: Create or open a document with the styles you want to copy to the style library. From the official For Dummies page: Create a new document or open a document ...
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8 votes
2 answers
2k views

"The" for the first time only

A quote from LibreOffice user manual: Turning on hyphenation for the Default Style paragraph style affects all other paragraph styles that are based on Default Style. You can individually change ...
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0 answers
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Omitting an implied article, or avoiding repetition [duplicate]

If I say "The boy and girl are..." I think it's as correct as "The boy and the girl", as some natives told me that. Do you confirm? But what is the rule in English for non repeating the article? ...
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17 votes
2 answers
3k views

Thank God it's Friday, tomorrow is THE weekend. Why the definite article?

Today is Friday. Tomorrow is the weekend. In terms of grammar, how is the definite article justified there? We say: It's noon. It's 12 o'clock. It's August. It's 2019. But we also ...
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21 votes
3 answers
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Why do they not say "The Baby"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HkXnhlCkVPM In this video he says "put baby in" and not "put the baby in" Also, in other baby type videos they say "place baby inside" or "now you can see that baby ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
180 views

Usage of articals. e.g. When do we use a singular noun on its own without an article?

2 questions. Q1. Earlier these days, I saw the usage of "Leader of ...", which is a countable noun without a preceding article. Is that grammatically correct? What I found in oxford guide to english ...
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1 answer
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"in like manner" v. "in the like manner"

1."in like manner" or 2."in the like manner" I thought that the latter is correct, but more digging points to the former. In Leviathan,of Hobbes, in like manner is used twenty five times, whereas ...
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"An autonomous being" vs "autonomous being"? When to place an indefinite article? [duplicate]

He treats her as property rather than an autonomous being. or He treats her as property rather than autonomous being. Which of the above sentences is correct and why?
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Why isn't there any article in the expression "vary from school to school"?

I am a non-native English learner. An example sentence in LONGMAN dictionary confused me. In the sentence "Test scores vary from school to school", there is no article in front of either school. I ...
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1 answer
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Zero article before nouns in the commonest sense

I am interested in whether the article can be omitted in a phrase like The Ideas About a Woman in Roman Literature (as in the name of a scientific article). Is the article needed here at all, since ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Why is the article omitted before "climate change"?

In the book "Advanced Grammar in Use" there is a sentence: We will talk about climate change in a later part of the course. Q1: Why is the article completely omitted in front of "climate change"? ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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No article with president [duplicate]

If I were president... Why don't we have article "a" before "president"? Thank you!
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5 votes
5 answers
2k views

Using "woman" without article: "I am woman"

I heard the lyrics of a song by Helen Reddy: I am woman, hear me roar In numbers too big to ignore […] I am woman watch me grow See me standing toe to toe As I spread my lovin' arms ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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When to use "the" in numbering and labelling? [closed]

Practical English Usage 142.20 reads We usually leave out articles in abbreviated styles: numbering and labelling Go through door A Control to Car 27: can you hear me? Turn to page 26. What can ...
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2 votes
3 answers
2k views

Zero articles in movie and book titles

Can you please explain to me, why sometimes there's no article in the movie or book titles, even if these titles are singular count nouns. For example: "Junky" by William S. Burroughs or "Alien" by ...
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0 votes
3 answers
554 views

"...[b]etween rich and poor" and "...[b]etween the rich and the poor"

My colleague and I were discussing a student's paper. We agreed that according to our experiences and knowledge of English, the following sentence is grammatically correct: "The difference ...
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1 vote
1 answer
41k views

"in efforts to" vs "in an effort to"

Is efforts being used properly in this sentence because we are promoting multiple efforts? In efforts to promote our products, we are providing a website and flyers for your use. Or should it be: ...
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1 vote
0 answers
485 views

Articles with proper names

It's correct to use the definite article before the name of a river, canal, sea and ocean: When my father dies, we will have to wash him, wrap him in rich cloth, cremate him, and then sprinkle ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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"I spilled water on the table and [the] floor"

Compare the sentences: I spilled water on the floor. I spilled water on the table and floor. I spilled water on the table and the chair. Is the missing the before floor in the second ...
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1 vote
1 answer
199 views

Use indefinite article or omit it

Could you explain to me why there is no article before «parent» but there is the indefinite article before «meeting»? Is possible to use the article in the first case or omit it in the second? Say ...
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1 vote
1 answer
443 views

Should 'one' be considered an article?

There is but one king, and I am one. Here, the 'one' at the end of the sentence stands for 'one king' and 'one' is not specifying (in this particular place) a numeral. It is implying 'I am that one' ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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The correct articles in "me, a ..." or "me, the ..."

What is the correct article (a, the or maybe none) to use in the sentences and titles below: First sentence: This article is about me, a programmer. This article is about me, the programmer. A ...
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0 votes
1 answer
508 views

Definite article or zero article? [closed]

I am writing a mathematical paper. There is a certain sequence (3) in the paper. I write: Lemma 4.5. The sequence (3) is exact. Is that correct, or should I better write with the zero article, ...
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5 votes
1 answer
2k views

What’s the reason for the zero article after a preposition and countable noun in “a change of X” and in “a switch from X to Y”?

I am a non-native speaker of English and therefore need your help. The question is: why do we use the zero article in the phrases “a change of X” and “a switch from X to Y”? For instance: a change ...
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2 votes
0 answers
148 views

Are there significant differences in how “college” and “university” are used in syntactic constructions?

To me (an American), "what to study in college" sounds acceptable. Meanwhile, "what to study in university" sounds wrong. This suggests that these words have different grammatical attributes. This ...
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1 vote
1 answer
3k views

The use of taking (an) interest

Is the following question correct? What's wrong with taking interest? I know taking AN interest or showing interest is better, but I would like to know if taking interest is also correct.
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2 votes
2 answers
869 views

The proper time to use "zero article", though the noun is countable followed by

I basically know that when I want to use some nouns then I need to consider the proper form of the articles ahead of the nouns and if the noun is countable or uncountable. Sometimes I see some cases ...
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3 votes
2 answers
171 views

CV/Résumé - Article Drop [closed]

I think my question is rather a stylistic one, but it really bugs me. From a grammatical standpoint, "the" should always precede ordinal numbers. However, articles are usually omitted in headlines. ...
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