This is something weird.


  1. I go to the city.
  2. Yesterday, I went to New York City.

You can see from the examples that when the city has a name, it doesn't use the word "the." But is it the same for:


  1. The highest peak is located in the Himalaya Mountain Range.
  2. The highest peak is located in Himalaya Mountain Range.

Does this one use the or not? The same question apply for road or other place that is not a village, town, city, and nation.
Or is there a certain rule that sometimes determiner is used, sometimes not?

2 Answers 2


Yes, we do have a rule for it.

The Ø
。Sea, oceans, rivers: The Mediterranean, The Atlantic, The Rhine 。Singular countries, states: France, Texas
。Plural countries: The Netherlands, The Philippines 。Continents: Asia, Europe
。Countries with common nouns: The United Kingdom 。Lakes: Lake Geneva
。Mountain chains, island groups: The Rockies, The West Indies 。Islands: Greenland
。Areas: The Far East 。Towns: Sidney


Toeic Grammar by la cite des langues

  • Not entirely watertight, though - people from Orkney and Shetland prefer their island groups to be so named, not The Orkneys. Commented Mar 19, 2022 at 10:07

Yes that's a controversy at the moment -- some people refer to "Ukraine" (the country) and others refer to "the Ukraine".

I think the word "the" implies that the place that's being named is a region, and is not a single place or a single political entity -- so "Ukraine" is correct, and "the Ukraine" may imply that it's not a country.

So "the Himalayas" -- or "the Caribbean", "the Great Lakes", "the Prairie Provinces" -- but conversely "Mount Everest" or "Jamaica" or "Lake Superior".

Or in your first example, "the city", there "city" is a common noun and not a proper name at all.

  • I see. No wonder that there are those with the and not. Thank you for the answer!
    – ZZZ
    Commented Mar 19, 2022 at 9:59
  • Can you improve your formatting in some way?
    – user150280
    Commented Mar 19, 2022 at 10:15
  • @Eden0516 Can you be more specific about what you want to see improved, what don't you like? The current formatting is fairly conventional in my opinion, i.e. paragraphs (actually one paragraph per sentence) -- and I think I use quotation-marks correctly -- perhaps you don't like my use of "em-dash" as punctuation?
    – ChrisW
    Commented Mar 19, 2022 at 10:38
  • @ChrisW Nothing, just a bit hard to look at
    – user150280
    Commented Mar 19, 2022 at 10:42
  • go to the city or go to a city because you can't just use: go to city
    – Lambie
    Commented Nov 19, 2023 at 18:31

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