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Look at this sentence:

I have a theory that any physical defect has its correlative mental and moral defect. Can Such Things Be? by Bierce, Ambrose

I usually see "the fact that..." "the theory that..." But here it is 'a' Why?

We have this rule when it comes to the apposition "of" like the city of London, the two of us.

Does this not apply here?

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A is used here instead of that, because the speaker's theory is one of many possible theories.

A is used before a noun when you are talking about one thing out of many, e.g. "I have a theory that the moon is made of cheese. There are many theories out there, but this one is mine." The is used before a noun when you are talking about a very specific thing, perhaps something that you had talked about before, or something that everyone should already know about. For example, "I just disproved the theory that we were working on in class yesterday."

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