Articles in the English Language
Table of Contents
We use Articles in the English Language to specify the Nouns we use.
Let me tell you that if there is any noun other than Proper Noun which is already specified in itself, you are supposed to use an article before every noun.
- Ram is my friend. – In this sentence, Ram is already a specified person. Hence, we are not supposed to use any article before that.
- There is a boy in my class. – Here you can see there are two nouns. First, ‘boy’ which is not specified, so we are using the article ‘a’ before that. Second is ‘class’ and we are using determiner ‘my’ before that. ‘My’ is making ‘class’ specified.
So, I hope you understand that if we are going to use any noun in our sentence, we have to determine that with articles or with other determiners. For determiners, there is a separate post.
- Indefinite Articles
- Definite article
‘A’ and ‘An’ are indefinite articles. It is because we use them for the nouns we use for the first time in our conversation or sentences. Not only this, the noun should be singular as well.
So, we can say, we have to use ‘a’ or ‘an’ before the nouns which meet the below mentioned conditions:
- Using for the first time
- I met a boy.
- There was a special train at the exhibition.
- I need a book.
- You gave me a pen.
- They need a helicopter.
- Give me a bottle.
In all these sentences, we are using the nouns for the first time in a general sense. It means they are not specified. Also, they are singular.
‘A’, we use for the nouns which start with consonant sound. And ‘an’, we use before the nouns which have pronunciation starting with a vowel sound.
Hope you are able to understand the use of ‘a’ and ‘an’.
We use ‘the’ before the nouns which are specified or special to us. Not only this, either we have used them once already or we know the noun already in broader term (general sense).
- Where is the book which I gave you? – We are talking about a specific book.
- The boy who came here yesterday is my friend. – Specific noun
- The earth is round. – We already know it
- The Moon is a satellite for the earth.
- The USA is a huge country.
- The UK ruled many geographies.
Note: if we do not know any noun in advance or used it already, how can we use ‘the’ before that noun. So, understand, ‘the’ is special and specified.
I saw a boy on the road. The boy was wearing a red shirt. The shirt was looking precious. So, I guessed either the boy belongs to a well-to-do family or has been given this shirt by someone rich. Maybe the rich person who gave him the shirt was full of mercy. I appreciated the mercy. However, in the other case, if the boy was rich, my appreciation would be waste. Here, I am talking about though. The thought that has nothing to do with the reality is just an imagination.
Now, we have something special. It is called Zero Article.
‘Zero article’ is used for the nouns which are names of places and we use those nouns for the purpose which they are created for. For example:
- I go to college daily. – No Article before college.
- He went to church on Sunday. – No Article before Church and Sunday.
- He visited the market to buy a TV. – No article before market.
- She does to bed on time. – Zero Articles before bed.
- We have court to attend tomorrow.
However, if we use these nouns for some other purpose, use Articles before them.
- I saw a school on the way.
- The school is near to Ram’s house.
- I sat on the bed
- I will meet you near the court.
- We went to the prison to meet the superintendent.
Appoint, made, nominate, elect, and declared, etc, we don’t use articles after them verbs as they also state the general and obvious thing/meaning.
- He was elected MLA
- They nominated him, secretary.
- We made him monitor.
- He was declared captain of our team.
Read this story and understand the use of articles in it. Also, I recommend you to read newspapers and books and observe the usage of articles.
This is a post about articles. I would be writing more posts on different topics of the English Language. So, stay connected.
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If you have a specific question related to articles, please write to me at my email address Suniltams@gmail.com. I would be glad to assist you.
Suniltams English Guru
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