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The indefinite article A/ AN is used: The definite article THE is used:

• With singular countable nouns when we talk about things in general: An aeroplane is faster than a train.

• Before singular and plural nouns, both countable and uncountable, when we are talking about something specific: The boy who has just left is my cousin. (Not any boy. The specific boy, the one who has just left.)

We use A/ AN when we mention something for the first time. When we mention it again, we use THE: I saw a beautiful vase in an antique shop a few days a go. When I went back to the shop yesterday, the vase wasn’t there anymore! We use both A/ AN or THE before a single countable noun to represent a class of people, animals or things: A/ The dolphin is more intelligent than a/ the shark. But: Dolphins are more intelligent than sharks. A/ AN is also used: A/ AN is not used:

•Often after the verbs TO BE and TO HAVE: He is a photographer. He has got a camera. •With the expressions of quantity A COUPLE OF, A FEW, A LITTLE, A PAIR OF: I bought a pair of leather gloves yesterday. •In exclamations with WHAT + a countable noun: What a nice girl!
THE is also used with:

•With uncountable or plural nouns. We can use SOME instead: Would you like some tea? ~ Yes, please! And I’d like some biscuits. •In exclamations with WHAT + an uncountable or plural noun: What nasty weather! What lovely children you have got!

THE is not used with:

•Nouns which are unique: We want to visit the capital of Italy to see the Coliseum. Also: the sun, the earth, the moon, the sky, the world… •Names of countries which include the words KINGDOM, REPUBLIC, STATE or UNION (the UK, the Republic of Lithuania), or are plural (the Netherlands). •Names of regions: the Far East, the West. But: Southern California. •Names of rivers (the Thames), seas (the Black Sea), oceans (the Pacific), deserts (the Sahara), groups of islands (the Bahamas), mountain ranges (the Alps). •Names of cinemas (the Odeon), theatres (the Rex), museums (the British Museum), galleries (the National Gallery), hotels (the Sheraton Hotel), newspapers (the Times), ships (the Queen Mary). •Names of families/ nationalities in plural: the Smiths, the English. But: English people. •Titles without proper names: the Queen, the President. •Musical instruments: Can you play the guitar? •Adjectives used as plural nouns: This office helps the unemployed to find work. •The superlative degree of adjectives and adverbs: He’s the most successful businessman in town.

•Proper noun: Her name is Paula Gibson. •Singular names of countries: England. •Names of cities (London), streets (Bond Street), parks (Hyde Park). But: the Hague, the Fifth Avenue. •Names of continents (Europe), lakes (Lake Michigan), separate islands (Cyprus) and mountains (Mount Everest). •Names of airports (Heathrow Airport), stations (Paddington Station), magazines (Cosmopolitan). •Names of meals: Lunch is ready. We ate fish for dinner. •Names of subjects, languages, sports, activities, colours, substances: Physics is a difficult subject to learn. She speaks Russian. He plays tennis well. She likes blue. This bag is made of leather. •Titles followed by a proper name: Queen Elizabeth, President Bush. •The possessive case or possessive adjectives: This is Katie’s favourite book. This isn’t your coat. •Cardinal numbers: five books, room 12. •The words HOME, MOTHER/ FATHER when we talk about our own home/ parents: Father isn’t at home. •The words BED, CHURCH, HOSPITAL,

at the top. NOBODY. We use A LOT OF/ LOTS OF in positive sentences with both uncountable nouns and plural countable nouns: There is a lot of/ lots of snow outside. •After the preposition BY: by fax. by bus. SOME is usually used in positive sentences: There are some good pubs in this street. i. in the centre. SCHOOL. PRESS. THEATRE. How much is this dress? MANY requires a plural countable noun: He didn’t invite many people to the party. NO SOME. We don’t have any bread left. COUNTRY(SIDE). SOMEONE. ANYWHERE.•Ordinal numbers: He was the first sportsman to finish the marathon. Other phrases with THE: on the left. SOMEWHERE. NOTHING. at right. PRISON. But: His mother went to the prison to visit him last week. SOMETHING. UNIVERSITY. We also use ANY in questions. I’ve got a lot of/ lots of books about art. Notice that the verb is positive. at night. on the wall. when we expect the answer “yes”: Can I have some apples? Would you like some more cake? ANY is usually used in negative sentences: There aren’t any cinemas here. RADIO. COAST. MUCH.: We go to the countryside every summer. in the morning. on holiday. sunset. ANYTHING. ANYBODY. LOTS OF A LOT OF/ MANY. Are there many tourists at this time of year? TOO MUCH and TOO MANY express a negative idea. ANY. in the afternoon. when the answer can be either “yes” or “no”: Are there any shops near your house? Have you put any sugar in my tea? NO means the same as NOT ANY: There are no cinemas where I live. BEACH. MUCH and MANY are used in negative sentences and questions. on the ceiling. they mean ‘more than the right amount’: I can’t work here – there’s too much noise. Would you like to go somewhere tonight? I don’t want to see anybody! Is anything wrong? Nothing bad will happen to us. COLLEGE. . NOWHERE: Somebody wants to see you. We’ve got too many things in this room – it’s impossible to move. We also use SOME in questions that are requests or offers. on business. on foot… at the bottom. etc. The rules are the same for the compounds SOMEBODY. NO ONE. I’d like some coffee. ANYONE. on the Other phrases without THE: at noon. in the middle. in the evening… QUANTIFIERS These quantifiers are used with both plural countable nouns and uncountable nouns. when they are used for the reason they exist: John was sent to prison.e. •The words CINEMA. MUCH requires an uncountable noun: They haven’t got much money at the moment. But: Many of the books I’ve read are about art. on the floor. SEASIDE.

With Uncountable Nouns How much? a little a bit (of) a great deal of a large amount of a large quantity of With Both How much? or How many? no/none not any some (any) a lot of plenty of lots of With Countable Nouns How many? a few a number (of) several a large number of a great number of a majority of Graded Quantifiers . it means ‘nearly no’: She had little money. We use (A) FEW with plural countable nouns. ENOUGH is used before nouns but after adjectives and adverbs: There weren’t enough chairs for everybody to sit. BOTH has a positive meaning and takes a verb in the plural. = They all study English. Neither job was very interesting. ALL takes a verb in the plural. I don’t mind. LITTLE expresses a negative idea. He came early enough to see the match. BOTH.’ NEITHER has a negative meaning and it takes a verb in the singular: First I worked in a shop and later in a bank. so I’m not lonely. / Jack and Kate are both students of English. EITHER and NEITHER are used to talk about 2 things or people. so she had to sell her car. ALL and EVERY have a positive meaning. Notice the difference between the expressions EVERY DAY/ MORNING/ SUMMER and ALL DAY/ MORNING/ SUMMER: How often do you buy newspapers? – Every morning. people). The rules are the same for the compounds EVERYBODY. it means ‘some but not many’: I’ve got a few friends. You may also say: Both of them study English./ All of them are students of English. He is old enough to live on his own. We use (A) LITTLE with uncountable nouns. It is used before main verbs but after auxiliary or modal verbs: Jack and Kate both study English. A LITTLE expresses a positive idea. The words in the middle column can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns. How long do you usually read newspapers? – All morning. NONE EVERY. You may also say: All of them study English./ Both of them are students of English. it means ‘some but not much’: He had a little money. so he bought a TV. EVERYONE. Rose and Sue haven’t got a car. NONE has a negative meaning and takes a positive verb in the singular or plural: Kate. advice). FEW expresses a negative idea. Mary and Kevin study English.LITTLE (A) (A) FEW. A FEW expresses a positive idea. EITHER has a positive meaning. and some can only go with countable nouns (friends. It is used before main verbs but after auxiliary or modal verbs: John. = None of them has/ have got a car. ALL. EVERY takes a verb in the singular: Every student in the class is eager to improve their English. rice. it means ‘nearly no’: He’s sad and lonely because he’s got few friend. money. but it takes a verb in the singular: ‘Would you like tea or coffee?’~ ‘Either is good. ENOUGH NEITHER EITHER./ They are all students of English. BOTH. EVERYTHING. bags. Quantifiers with countable and uncountable nouns Some adjectives and adjectival phrases can only go with uncountable nouns (salt. EVERYWHERE: Everybody needs friends.

She had less time to study than I did but had better results. but the most people live in China. more on health services but the most is spent on national defense. With uncountable nouns: Little less least With uncountable nouns: Much more most . INCREASE (0% to 100%) With plural countable nouns: many more most DECREASE (100% to 0%) With plural countable nouns: Few fewer fewest Examples: There are many people in Poland.They are like comparatives and hold a relative position on a scale of increase or decrease. Much time and money is spent on education. Give that dog the least opportunity and it will bite you. The country with the fewest people per square kilometre must be Australia. more in India. Scientists have little hope of finding a complete cure for cancer before 2010. Few rivers in Europe aren’t polluted. Fewer people die young now than in the nineteenth century.