Usually, none of goes with a noun preceded by the definite article the

None of the people I know...

I wonder if it is possible to have none of people, that is, to omit the? Can you come up with such a context?


No, you cannot say "none of people", because when you say "none of X", you are referring to none of some specific collection of people (like "the people I know"). Therefore you have to say "the people".


Just to add a reference that proves @stangdon's answer right:

None of
We use none with of before the, demonstratives (this, that), possessives (my, your) or pronouns:

  • None of his old friends knew what had happened to him. (Cambridge)

So you definitely need the in your case because none of will always be followed by a particular group of persons or things.

  • So, if you want to talk about unspecified objects (people etc) what other way can be used to convey "none of"?
    – user1425
    Jun 30 '21 at 15:33
  • 1
    You use no. No people I know... But to be honest, the easiest and more common way to say this would be: No one I know...
    – fev
    Jun 30 '21 at 15:38
  • Actually, if you do check the link to Cambridge I gave, you will find this example: There are no people I recognise here.
    – fev
    Jun 30 '21 at 15:42

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