I have an issue with putting articles in phrases like: "the equipment diagnostics and repair", "the equipment damage or breakage", "the Asset user’s explanation", "the asset damage or breakage causing".

The problem is that I am not sure whether I have to put "the" or not. As far as I know we have to put an article of the modified noun while the article of attributive noun is omitted. My modified nouns are plural mostly but the noun before the modified noun is not an abstract one, it is mentioned before. So I feel like I should make an emphasis that it is "damage" or "breakage" of that definite "asset" or "equipment", while also know that I has to put the article related to the modified noun.

Please, assist me with the proper grammar rule with using the articles with noun adjuncts.


1 Answer 1


I suggest that in the future you provide examples in context. Trying to analyze a mere phrase is close to impossible.

When we modify a noun by a noun, only one article is used, just as only one article is used when we modify a noun by an adjective.

We do not say "The red the ball was hidden behind the couch." We say "The red ball was hidden behind the couch."

Similarly, we do not say "The defendant is liable for the eqipment the damage." We say "The defendant is liable for the equipment damage."

If you are functionally treating a noun as an adjective, stop thinking about it grammatically as a noun. Moreover, there is never any need to use a noun as an adjective so you can avoid any problems you may have. "The defendant is liable for the damage to the equipment" is perfectly grammatical, and some consider it much better style.


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