“He had just received word that Uber was experiencing difficulties tracking the shooter’s getaway car.”

Excerpt From: Dan Brown. “Origin: (Robert Langdon Book 5).”

I am wondering why there is no article before "word". My understanding of the sentence is

He had just got a message/notification from Uber.

so "receive a word" would mean "receive a short message".

1 Answer 1


"Word" can be used as a mass noun meaning news or information, and in that case there would be no preceding article, e.g. word came from London that the King was dead.

2.1 mass noun Communication; news. ‘I was afraid to leave Edinburgh in case there was word from the War Office’

Word (Oxford Dictionaries)

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