Why the word "both" is considered as a determiner (According to the Cambridge and the Collins dictionary)? Example sentence: Both kids walked a minute ago.

Isn't it a quantifier? Also if yes then could you please tell me how to know when a word acts like a quantifier and when it acts like a determiner?

  • 1
    Yes, but 'quantifier' is not a word category (part of speech) like 'determiner' -- it's just a subclass of the determiner category. Other subclasses of determiner include degree, sufficiency, paucal, existential, cardinal numbers, demonstratives, articles and a few others. "Both" can be a determiner in, e.g. "Both copies were destroyed" or a predeterminer (modifier) in e.g. "He ate both those burgers".
    – BillJ
    Oct 7, 2017 at 18:37

1 Answer 1


Quantifiers are determiners (though not all determiners are quantifiers).

There are many different types of determiner. One way of classifying them is by position: there are predeterminers ("twice", "double", "half", "all", "both"); central determiners ("the", "a", "this", "my", "your"); and postdeterminers ("one", "two", "three", "several", "many", "few").

Most quantifiers are postdeterminers, i.e. they come after an article or possessive adjective (where present): "the many people", "his few friends".

"All" and "both" are predeterminers, i.e. they come before an article or possessive adjective (where present): "all the boys", "both his sisters".

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .