”I bought a book yesterday.”

”A man knocked on my door yesterday.”

I have been taught that the rules of ”a” and ”an” are to introduce something to the reader or listener, or to refer to any non-particular member of a group.

Are the indefinite articles doing these two actions at the same time? Or are there occassions when ”a” and ”an” only refer to any non-particular member of a group and does not introduce something and vice versa?

  • A member of a group can be a noun. – Michael Harvey Jul 20 '20 at 7:50
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    There is no need to think of a strict division between the two functions. "I opened the bag of wheat and took out a single grain" could be said to refer to a non-particular member of a group, but it's not an important distinction. – Kate Bunting Jul 20 '20 at 9:44

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