WHAT IS AN ARTICLE?
There are two articles in English- The and A/An. ‘The’ is used to refer to specific or particular nouns, ‘a/an’ is used to modify no specific nouns. We call ‘The‘ definite article and ‘A/An‘ the indefinite article.
For example, if I say, “Let’s read the book, “I mean a specific book. If I say, “let’s read a book” then I mean any book rather than a specific book.
Let’s look at each types of article a little more closely and Find out what is an article exactly.
TAKE A LOOK ON THIS INFOGRAPHIC
TYPES OF ARTICLE:
There are two types of article. And those are:
- Indefinite article.
- Definite article.
‘A’ and ‘An’ these are indefinite article.
‘A’ and ‘An’ signal that the noun modified is indefinite, referring to any number of a group. For example,
- “My daughter really wants a dog for Christmas”. This refers to any dog. We don’t know which dog because we haven’t found the dog yet.
- “When I was at the zoo, I saw an elephant?” There are probably several elephants at the zoo, but there is only one, we are talking about here.
Remember one thing, using ‘a’ or ‘an’ depends on the sound that begins the next word. So…
- ‘A’ + Singular noun beginning with a consonant.
For example, A zoo, A car, A bus, A bike, A tree.
- ‘An’ + Singular noun beginning with a vowel.
For example, An elephant, An egg, An orphan.
- ‘A’ + Singular noun beginning with a consonant sound. A user (sounds like yoo-zer, begins with a consonant ‘y’ sound, so ‘a’ is used), for example, a university, a school, a bicycle.
- ‘An’ + nouns starting with silent ‘h’, for example, an hour.
- ‘A ‘+ nouns starting with a pronounced ‘h’, for example, a horse.
- Another case where this rule applies is when acronyms start with consonant letters but have vowel sounds.
For example, An MSDS (material safety data sheet) was used to record data.
- If the noun is modified by an adjective, the choice between ‘a’ and ‘an’ depends on the initial sound of the adjective that immediately follows the article.
For example, A broken egg, An unusual problem.
- Remember, that in English, the indefinite articles are used to indicate membership in a group.
I am a student (Here I am a member of a large group known as teachers).
John is an Englishman (Here John is a member of the people known as English).
‘The’ is definite article.
The definite article is used before singular and plural nouns when the noun is specific.
- The dog that bit me ran away.
Here, we are talking about a specific dog, the dog that bit me.
- I saw the elephant at the zoo.
Here, we talking about a specific noun. Probably there is only one elephant at the zoo.
- The can be used with non-count nouns.
I love to sail over the water. (Some specific body of water)
- A/an can be used only with count nouns.
I need a bottle of water.
- Omit the before:
- Name of rivers.
- Points on the globe like the Equator, the North Pole.
- Geographical areas like The West.
RULES OF ARTICLE OMISSION:
The omission of articles.
The article “A, An, The” are omitted.
- Before a Proper noun. for example, Delhi is the capital of India, Shakespeare was the greatest dramatist.
- Before names of material.
- Silver is a useful metal.
- The tea of Assam is very famous (particular tea).
- Before common noun used in its wide sense.
- Man is Mortal, god is omnipresent, but we say the devil.
- Before abstract nouns as qualities feelings and States used in general science.
- love is a natural feeling, truth is a noble quality.
*Note- but we can say for example.
- The honesty of my brother is beyond any doubt.
- She always tells a lie.
- Suman always speak the truth.
- Before a noun complement( appoint, make, select, etc).
- The committee appointed him captain.
- They elected him president.
- Before collective nouns in general science.
- life is complex.
- society does not allow this.
- Before languages.
- Arabic is a difficult language.
- He knows Spanish very well.
- Before school college home Church temples work bed table Hospital market prison Court when their purpose is thought of rather than the actual building or place.
- we go to temple on Monday( for prayer).
- He went to sea in his early youth( as a sailor).
- I go to bed early( to sleep).
- Before hobbies profession and sports.
- Painting is her profession.
- Gardening is his hobby.
- Before names of disease.
- Cancer is a deadly disease.
- AIDS is spreading like Wildfire.
But we can say the measles, the mumps, the rickets, and the plague, etc
- In certain phrases.
- To lose heart.
- To give ear.
- At sunrise.
- At home.
- In hand.
- By name.
- At last.
- To set foot.
Some hand-picked topic for you:
EXERCISES ON ARTICLE (HOMEWORK)
You can use this as a Worksheet for school or college.
- _ boy
- _ Universal problem
- _ unique book
- _ University student
- _ elephant
- _ hourly visit
- _ honorable person
- For _ swim
- Have _ taste
- Make _ noise
- _ orange
- _ horse
- _ Greeks
- _ Indians
- _ judiciary
- _ legislature
- In _ air
- _ benefit of _ doubt
- Feel _ shame
- For _ drive
- Half _ dozen
- What is not _ child
- _ ass
- _ few students that were in _ class where sitting idle
- 12 inch make _ foot
- _ beggar cannot be _ chooser
- _ center of _ market
- _ whole class was absent
- _ son should be obedient
- _ mango is a sweet fruit
- Netaji was _ leader
- He is _ man for this job
- She can play _ flute
- Truth is _ noble quality
- _ Prime Minister and _ president are visiting _ town today
- _ first and second chapters are very difficult
- _ rose is a sweet flower
- _ Himalayas are to _ north of India
- There are many waterways in _ Ireland
- One day I will climb all _ Mount in _ Himalayas
- I wish I were good at _ mathematics
- what _ useful device _ laptop is!
- There are many rain forests in _ Amazon
- She works for _ group who helped _ poor
- _ World Health Organization will surely stop dengue
- I had _ opportunity to do it
- He succeeds in doing _ work
- This is _ charming scenery
- She is _ learned man
Tired of doing this don’t worry this fifty for next day
- The lion is called _ king of beasts
- The injured were taken to _ hospital
- They sent me _ box
- I am reading _ book
- They were calling _ boys
- I am living here for _ long time
- My father has died yesterday, he left me _ large fortune
- He is flying _ kite
- I like _ fool to be punished
- She laughed _ loud laugh
- It grows in _ heavy gale (Gale means – a very strong wind)
- He is _ honest man
- I have _ umbrella
- He is _ best man that I ever saw
- _ Rajdhani Express is _ hour late today
- Kalidas is _ Homer of India
- You must read _ Gita every day
- Bravo, what _ idea!
- I want _ pen and _ umbrella
- We stopped for lunch in _ small restaurant not far from _ town. We took rest for _ hour and then started for our destination
- Of all _ boys in _ class he is _ best. He stood first in _ last annual examination in scored _ record marks in mathematics. He is _ good sportsman. And plays _ guitar well
- John is one of _ best boys of our club. He has recently gone to _ U.S. and buy _ Air India flight ticket for higher studies.
- One day _ English gentleman named Rowland Hill saw _ postman take _ letter up to _ gate of _ house. _ girl came out to receive it. _ price of _ postage was 1 shilling. But she had no money to pay for _ letter
- _ secretary and _ headmaster of _ school called _ meeting of students to discuss _ urgent matter. _ meeting considered _ proposal put forward by _ student for improvement in common room facilities. _ discussion over held in _ amicable manner.
- I read _ Statesman which is _ very popular newspaper
- Is he _ European?
- He is _ boy who stood first last year
- He is _ officer in _ army
- _horse is _ animal
- He is _ European but his wife is _ Indian
Or just 21 left. Let’s do it
- I have _ bicycle. _ bicycle has two wheels
- I paid _ visit to _ west
- _ tea of Darjeeling is world famous
- We cross _ Pacific Ocean in _ airplane
- _ headmaster and _ secretary love _ students
- _ U.A.E is prosperous country
- There was _explosion in _town hall today
- _Hunter entered _ thick up _ forest
- There is _ mother in every woman
- Land is sold here by _ acre
- The book you want is not in _ libery
- Replace _ chair by _ new one
- I satisfied of _ truth what you say
- I need some respite from _ heavy work
- He is _ sticker for punctuality
- He was _ victim
- I am uneasy about _ effect of his action
- He died _ victim to his own folly
- The man is _ idiot
- He is _ able man
- I saved him from _ danger
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