Indefinite and Definite Articles – a,an and the

There are three articles a, an and the. Though they are small words, the damage they can cause is huge.

They can also change the meaning of the noun, let’s see how!

  • party: a social gathering

a party: a social gathering held for an event

the party: a specific social gathering held for an event

There are two kinds of articles- Indefinite and Definite.

Indefinite Articles – a,an

Indefinite articles are used before:

1. singular nouns that are unspecified:

  • a book
  • an apple

2. number collectives and some numbers:

  • a litre
  • a dozen

3. a singular noun followed by a restrictive modifier:

  • a boy who was wearing blue jeans
  • A girl who was eating a banana.

4. nouns to form adverbial phrases of quantity, amount, or degree:

  • Rita is a bit depressed.
  • I am a little frustrated.

Definite Article – the

Used to indicate a noun that is definite or that has been previously specified.

I have a car. The car is red.

Definite articles are used:

1. before unique nouns:

  • The Ganga is a sacred river.
  • The Taj Mahal is in India.

2. to talk about a natural phenomenon:

  • The earthquake shook the building.
  • The breeze is blowing.

3. to refer to a time period:

  • This movie was quite popular in the 90s.
  • Do not live in the past.

4. to talk about groups of people:

  • The rich should pay more taxes.
  • The elderly suffer a lot.

Correct use of articles can help you go a long way. Refer to this article to remember your articles!




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