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Articles

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by

Andrea Cole

on 24 June 2013

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Transcript of Articles

Articles (a, an, the)
Review of rules
and
practice

A
and
an
are used in front of a singular noun.

They mean "one."
Rules # 1 to 3:
1. If a singular noun is
modified by an adjective,
a
or
an
comes
in front of the adjective.

a
new car,
an
old car

2.
A
is used in front of words
that begin with a consonant.

a
friend,
a
star
3.
An
is used in front
of words that begin with
the vowels a, e, i, and o.

an
ocean,
an
eye
Rules # 4 to 5:
For words that begin with the letter u:
4.
An
is used if the u is a vowel sound.

an
umbrella
an
uncle
5.
A
is used if the u is a consonant sound.

a
university,
a
used car

Rules # 6 to 7:
For words that begin with the letter h:
6.
An
is used if the h is silent.

an
honest mistake,
an
hour
an
HD television
7.
A
is used if the h is pronounced.

a
house,
a
hospital,
a
HEPA filter

count nouns vs. noncount nouns
can be counted with numbers cannot be counted with numbers

have plural endings do not have plural endings
parts of a group of things a whole group of things / abstractions, ideas or concepts
Common noncount nouns
and
nouns that can be both count and noncount
Rules # 8 to 9:
a/an with count and noncount nouns
8. A count noun can be preceded by
a
/
an
in the singular

a
chair
an
orange
9. A noncount noun is not immediately preceded by a/an

Ø furniture
some furniture
Rules # 10 to 12:
using
the
with count and noncount nouns
10.
The
is used in front of singular count nouns (particular people, places, or things).

BUT

The
is NOT used with titled names.

Did you feed
the
dog?

Ø Mr. Smith lives across the street.

Ø President Carter was no reelected.
11.
The
is used in front of plural count nouns

Did you feed
the
dogs?
12.
The
is used in front of a noncount nouns when the noun describes some thing in particular, but
the
is not used in front of a noncount noun when the noun describes some thing in general.

The
fruit in
the
bowl is ripe. (particular)

Ø Fruit can be placed in a bowl. (general)

The
time to learn is now. (particular)

Ø Time is short. (general)
Rules # 13 to 15:
13.
The
is used to modify a noun that describes something in particular, or when the speaker and the listener are thinking about the same specific person(s) or thing(s). The indefinite article
a
or
an
modifies a noun that describes a generality.


The
pencil on that desk is Jim's. (particular)

A
pencil is used for writing. (general)

Please close
the
door. (particular)

An
automobile should not be left unlocked. (general)

I know
the
answer. (particular)

I don't have
an
answer. (general)

14. A speaker uses
the
when s/he mentions
a noun the second time.

I had a banana and an apple.
I gave
the
banana to Mary.

I drank some coffee and some milk.
The
coffee was hot.

Rules # 16 to 21:
Rules 22 to 27:
Practice 1 of 4
Practice 2 of 4
NOTE:
The
is a DEFINITE ARTICLE whereas
a
and
an
are INDEFINITE ARTICLES.
15.
The
always precedes an adjective in the superlative degree.

She is
the
best dancer.

He is
the
most intelligent student.
Practice 3 of 4
Practice 4 of 4
the
and names of points on the globe, geographic areas, continents, countries and cities
16.
The
is used with points on the globe.

the
North Pole,
the
south pole,
the
Equator
17.
The
is used with the names of geographic areas.

the
North,
the
Middle East,
the
Orient

18. A zero article (Ø) occurs with the names of continents.

Ø North America, Ø Africa, Ø Asia, Ø Europe
19.
The
occurs with names of countries when the name refers to a political union.

the United States, the Soviet Union
20. A zero article (Ø) usually occurs with
the names of countries (exception: The Netherlands).

Ø Canada, Ø England, Ø China
21. A zero article (Ø) occurs with the names of cities
(exception: the Hague).

Ø Toronto, Ø Paris, Ø Sydney
22.
The
accompanies the names of rivers, oceans, and seas.

the Nile, the Atlantic Ocean, the Mediterranean Sea
23. A zero article (Ø) occurs with the names of lakes and bays
(exception: the Bay of Biscay).

Ø Lake Superior, Ø Hudson Bay

24.
The
appears with groups of lakes.

the Great Lakes
25.
The
accompanies the names of ranges of mountains.

the
Rockies,
the
Alps
26. A zero article (Ø) occurs with the name of
a single mountain (exception: the Matterhorn).

Ø Mount Everest, Ø Mount Rushmore
27.
The
precedes the name of an archipelago, a desert, a forest, a gulf, or a peninsula.

the
Malay Archipelago,
the
Sahara Desert,
the
Black Forest,
the
Persian gulf,
the
Italian Peninsula

more with
the
Full transcript