Questions tagged [indefinite-article]

An article is a word that combines with a noun to indicate the type of reference being made by the noun.

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This is a/the story of a little girl [duplicate]

What's the difference between "a" and "the" in the following sentence? This is a/the story of a little girl in a wheelchair called Susan who laughs, sings, flies and swings – just ...
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“looking for the accessible text of the novel” vs. “looking for an accessible text of the novel”

I've come to think today whether the use of the definite article in the context of the following post is correct: Having trouble understanding Pride and Prejudice? Being visually impaired, are you ...
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“showed positive reaction” or “showed a positive reaction” for repetitive times

Do I need to use the indefinite article in the sentence below or can I omit it? In general, she showed a very positive reaction to any developments in the lessons throughout this year. I guess I ...
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Grammar behind “a length of 2 meters”

I believe that The length of [something] is 2 meters. is basically equivalent to [Something] has a length of 2 meters. where the following is invalid: [Something] has the length of 2 meters. I'm ...
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Selling a copy of the original as original is called “fraud” (idiomatic?)

Selling a copy of the original as original is called "fraud" idiomatic or do we need the indefinite article "a" before fraud like "a fraud"?
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What's the difference in meaning between these two sentences?

• We'll taste the dishes of different restaurants there. • We'll taste dishes of different restaurants there. Are they both grammatically correct? And if they are, what's the difference in meaning ...
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Indefinite article before plurals

I have came across such sentence: By now, Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne for an astounding 67 years. Why do we use "an" here, even though 67 years is plural?
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Twinge of (a) thought

I didn't pay attention to that twinge of (a) thought of losing what I hadn't lost yet. Should there be an article in this phrase?
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1answer
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Which article to use before a noun that is being repeated in a sentence?

Should I use a definite or indefinite article before a noun that is being repeated in a sentence? For example, should I use "the" or "a" in the following sentence before the second ...
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Is it 'an hotel' or 'a hotel' [duplicate]

In a book I saw this statement. Before words beginning with h and not accented on the first syllable, an is often used ; as, An historical , an hotel. I want to know whether h in hotel is ...
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What does it mean when I say “She is always early for work on a Monday”?

What does it indicate when we use an indefinite article before Monday or any other day?
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“This company makes quality product” - how to explain correctly why there is no “a” before “product”?

The question is in the title - I know that "product" here serves as a plural, but it's hard to google how this situation is called in linguistics, and if there are any formal rules that ...
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Use of indefinite article with non countable nouns [closed]

As per the article rule, we should not use an indefinite article before the non countable nouns. But following are the examples of the indefinite articles with non countable nouns. Day 3 has been a ...
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1answer
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Two meanings of the indefinite article

Why do people say "How to use an iron" meaning any iron? Doesn't it mean that there is one iron and you ask how to use it and that because we can't say "I love a cat" because it ...
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One of my favourite flowers is tulips/a tulip/the tulip/tulip

Which one is correct? One of my favourite flowers is tulips/a tulip/the tulip/tulip
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bit vs a bit, which one to use when?

I've got a slight confusion while using them. I believe "a bit" is used in the case when we are thinking from an "a little" perspective. ex- he is a bit too late. When shall we use ...
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pronunciation of article 'a' in phrases vs. in sentences [duplicate]

One of my teacher corrected me when I read the article 'a' as /ey/ in a phrase. And he said it should be /uh/. A banana (/uh/) I know that both are acceptable /ey/ and /uh/, but is there really a ...
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“They were a powerful people”

I'm reading The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame and there's the following phrase: "They were a powerful people, and rich, and great builders." However, I've googled a rule: Plural ...
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1answer
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What article should I use before the noun “handstand”?

What article(s) should I use before the noun "handstand"? I read several example sentences with this word and found different options to choose from. I would like to know if they are all ...
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1answer
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An indefinite article with proper noun

Review: Nest Hub (2nd gen) sleep tracking ushers in a radically more pervasive Google Assistant It's the review title of this media. Why is there an indefinite article 'a'? Because Google Assistant ...
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1answer
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into “a” or “the” wall?

As soon as Tom stepped into the room, Pete shoved him against a/the wall. In writing would native speakers be more inclined to use the definite article here even though we don't know which of the ...
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Should I say “sent by post” or “sent by a post”?

Should I use article "a" in this sentence? Has anyone sent documents by post or Has anyone sent documents by a post?
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35 views

“The fog rolled in” vs. “a fog rolled in”

Could you tell me the difference between the fog rolled in and a fog rolled in? For example: The fog rolled in and we couldn't see anything on the highway. A fog rolled in and we couldn't see ...
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1answer
32 views

Indefinite article with non-count noun

Can anybody explain to me the use of the indefinite article in the following sentences: She had a great zest for life. The danger of being caught added a certain zest to the affair. "Zest" ...
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The building was destroyed by (a) fire

The building was destroyed by a fire. The building was destroyed by fire. I have almost always used “fire” as an uncountable noun. What’s the difference between the two sentences? Which example is a ...
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The most popular means of transport is the car/a car - which article?

Which article is correct in this sentence? The most popular means of transport is the car/a car As far as I understand, when we mean the invention itself in general, we use 'the', but 'a' implies ...
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What's the difference between a/an and the?

For example: "I sent a report about a wrong item." VS. "I sent a report about the wrong item." I'm confused. Thank you in advance.
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What articles and when do I use with the phrase “past tense”?

Let's take a couple of quotes from the Wikipedia article: The past tense is a grammatical tense whose function is to place an action or situation in past time. In some languages, the grammatical ...
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Why do we use an indefinite article in the sentence “I can't imagine a world without electricity”?

As far as I understand, it speaks specifically about our entire planet, and not about some abstract world. Isn't it better to use the definite article in this case?
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Should I place an article before “20/20 vision”?

Having (a) 20/20 vision is the desirable condition of the eye. If you have (a) 20/20 vision you don't need glasses. (A) 20/20 vision is required for certain job positions. Is the article "a"...
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Why is “the pharmacy” supposed to be appropriate in the context? What about “a pharmacy”, “pharmacies”, or “pharmacy”?

I've been studying English for many years, but still struggling with learning the usage of English articles. Below is one example. From a news article I read on this site. How some drugs can turn ...
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“ a university has hectic schedules” or “universities have hectic schedules”?

I think in order to describe a general situation, both the plural of countable noun and adding indefinite articles before the countable noun could work. So is it ok for me to use both to convey the ...
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1answer
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Why isn't the “a” article added before the phrase “slightly different terminology”?

I would like to know why the "a" article hasn't been added before the phrase "slightly different terminology" in this paragraph: So, you can create exactly the Employee — Manager ...
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I've seen many [ a shooting star / shooting stars ] lately [duplicate]

Is the former like there were a few days where a single shooting star appeared? And is the latter like there were a few days where one or more than one shooting stars appeared?
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Why do we use the indefinite article “a” with the nouns “wind” & “breeze”?

Consider these examples: There’s a wind blowing through here tonight. A wind is a current of air that is moving across the earth's surface. Open the doors, I want to get a breeze. Why do we use the ...
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1answer
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Whether to use a definite or indefinite article when we talk about punctuation marks?

Example 1: Option A: A question mark is used only at the end of a sentence. Option B: The question mark is used only at the end of a sentence. Example 2: Option A: A ? character is used only at the ...
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(That or These)/(This or Those) for Compound Subjects?

I understand that compound subjects when joined with "and" are plural: The car and house are for sale. But what about for the "that/this" preceding the compound subjects? That/...
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Why don't the authors use the articles 'a' and 'an' infront of the the words 'period' and 'entity' respectively?

This is an excerpt from The IBM Style Guide for technical writers: In books, use a period in titles for chapters and appendixes. Insert the period after the name of the entity and the identifying ...
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“You have a good pronunciation.” vs “You have good pronunciation.”

As I understand, it's needed to use article "a" in this sentence, but I saw examples where it's not used. Why? Is it mistake or it is possible to use both variants? You have a good ...
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“Life has meaning” vs. “life has a meaning”

Could you tell me what kind of meaning the use of a adds to the following sentence? Life has meaning; it's just we can't it figure it out yet. Life has a meaning; it's just we can't it figure it out ...
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“a” or “the” article before a compound noun

Avoid including words that are clear from a/the file type or otherwise obvious. Not recommended: presentation_for_google_summer_of_code_2011.ppt Recommended: summer_of_code_2011.ppt (The above ...
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It's expected that the rebels will succeed in bringing down a government that is increasingly unpopular

Violence flared up again today in the troubled southern region when several bombs went off in the centre of the capital. Support for the rebels is growing, and it's expected that the rebels will ...
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“Believe in an afterlife” or “believe in the afterlife”?

Could you tell which article I use after afterlife: an or the? For example: Do you believe in an afterlife? Do you believe in the afterlife? I have seen both used before afterlife, but I can't ...
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What is the difference between using 'as president' and 'as a president'?

Someone asked why we can't use as the president/as a president in this sentence. When teachers were upset about the stringent accountability measures Barack Obama imposed on them as president. And ...
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Whether to use the definite article when we talk about a noun that belongs to an indefinite noun?

Rule 5: Order [the] elements included in a bibliographic record in the most appropriate way to retrieve the book. For example, if the books are retrieved according to the author, the author element ...
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“a victim of something” vs. “the victim of something”

Could you tell me whether I have to use a or the before victim in the folliwing sentence? Sara has been a/the victim of identity theft too. What I'm trying to say is that Sara has been one of many ...
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24 views

Indefinite article before group of nouns

I wrote the following sentence in gmail: Please provide us with s184 certificate and invoice. The auto grammar check suggested I insert "an" as below: Please provide us with an s184 ...
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38 views

Sweat [Countable / Uncountable]

I was wondering if the indefinite article "a" is necessary in the following sentences, whereas the noun "sweat" in an uncountable word. I broke out in a cold sweat from pain. I ...
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Use of article 'the'

Of Rama and Usha the latter is the more responsible. I think use of the is superfluous before competative degree more. But my book suggest that the given sentence is absolutely right. Please explain ...
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Why Does “Step BY Step” Have No Indefinite Article?

We use by to mean something each or separate (e.g., one by one, step by step, electoral votes by state, wine consumption by country, etc.), and these bys suppress the following nouns' indefinite ...

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