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Articles - English Grammar Notes

Published on Saturday, May 30, 2015
In a series of sharing useful English Grammar notes, today I am sharing Articles. Last week I shared Adverbs.

Types of Articles:

1. Definite (the)
2. Indefinite (a/an)


#1. there was a king in the forest and the king was brave.
                { here 'a' used before king ( which is not known and does not described before,it is also countable noun,so there we use 'a'.

#2. She is an intelligent girl.

               { a indefinite article is used before the adjective of singular noun }

#3. she gave me aninformation .
  { Article is not used before information because information is not a singular countable noun }
        so the correct sentence will be 
Correct Sentence : She gave me information                      

Where to use 'a' and 'an'

   'a' is used before singular countable noun started with a consonant alphabet or which are sound consonant. 
Ex: chair, BA etc

'an' is used before the singular countable noun which are started countable noun which are started with vowels or give sound of vowels.
Ex : Heir,Apple etc.

Use of indefinite article

1. With Proper Noun :
          Example: This book is written by a Chetan  .
                 This book is written by Chetan .

{ Difference between above two sentence is that in the 1st sentence we are talking about 'Chetan' who is not a particular and in the next sentence 'Chetan' is described as  famous or a particular special person.}

2. The Case of so , as , too :
   Example : 1. It is too heavy a parcel for me to carry.

                    2. She is as beautiful a girl as you are ever likely to me.

                    3. A mid wave of shouting was flowing in the party.



#1. You are the man who helped me.

#2. These are the girls whom are I have invited.

#3. The water of this well is polluted.

==>> Here 'the' is used before the noun to make the noun specific.
==>>'The' article is used before the singular countable noun , uncountable noun.
==>>'The' article is used with the country names if it's last letter of name include 's'.
==>>'The' is used before the countries which are stated by  using 'united' , 'Republic'.
 Example: United states of America ,Republic of China.

4. Incorrect statement : The director and producer of the film were* present in the function.
Correct Statement: The director and producer of the film was present in function.

     Note: Here 'the' is used with director only and the producer is separated by using 'and' , here the sentence state that producer and director is the same person. so the verb should be singular so here use was instead of  'were'.

Omission of Article

#1. He goes to school daily.
#2. He is standing near by the school.

==>> 'The' article is used before noun when we have need to show something specific.It is  not as before the noun representing general act.

#3. He went to church to offer prayers.    [general act]
#4. He went to the church to meet his friends.

Words with which 'the' is not used in general cases:

  • Church  for prayers
  • Temple for prayers
  • Collage as student
  • School to study
  • Court 
  • University
  • Bed to sleep
  • Market 
  • Hospital as a Patient
  • Jail as a prisoner

Use of ' little ' , 'a little' , 'the little'

=> little means negligible
=>A little means little
=> The little means sufficient

Rule- All of these are used with uncountable noun.


#1. He did not attempt any question in the exam, as he had little knowledge of computer.

#2. He attempted two question in the exam as he had a little knowledge of computer

#3. The little knowledge of computer that he possessed was sufficient to crack the exam.

Use of Few , A Few , The Few

   It is used before the uncountable nouns.
The use age was same as of  (little, a little, the little)


#1. In an hours* time ,he reached Mumbai.

#2. Music is a science but singing is art* said the music teacher.

#3. Thanks to an insight and persistence of the local doctors , thousand of victims were able to resume  a normal life.

#4. There are a hundred of partially built houses in the town.

#5. I don't like that kind of a man who does nothing but finds faults in others.

#6. He thinks about himself to be a linguistic but in reality he does'nt know even ABC of linguistics.

Note:- 'a' is not used before the noun if it followed by 'of'
  • 'the' article is used in the case of  'noun of noun'.
Other words are 
  • plenty of
  • bind of
  • sort of 
  • type of

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