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Determiners and quantifiers

Determiners and quantifiers are words we use in front of nouns. We use determiners to identify things (this book, my sister) and we use quantifiers to say how much or how many (a few people, a lot of problems).

Read clear grammar explanations and example sentences to help you understand how determiners and quantifiers are used. Then, put your grammar knowledge into practice by doing the exercises.  

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Comments

Sir(s),

Please, why is the definite article in the phrase "the impossible" used? Since an article cannot be used with an adjective unless it's used to represent a class just as in "the poor"?

Hello Abdulsalam,

I'm afraid I'd need to know the context to be able to answer that. 

It's true that we don't generally use an article before an adjective in this way, except when speaking about nationalities or well-known groups, e.g. 'the poor', 'the elderly', etc.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Sir,
I want to know the difference between the two sentences below. It get me somewhat confused if the article "a" should be added. Which is correct?

1. They considered her heroine.
2. They considered her a heroine.

Thanks.

Progress.

Hello Progress,

1 is not correct and 2 is correct. Being a heroine is not exactly a profession, but we use 'a' before a person's profession (for example, 'I am a teacher', 'She is a pastor', etc.).

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Thanks Sir for the reply.

Sir,
Is it correct to replace "the" with "a "before 'sum' in the following sentence?

" She was paid the sum of Rupees 50,000 for that book on Indian history"

Kindly explain.

Hello p t balagopal,

Yes, you can use either a or the here. When we give a concrete figure in a context like this we can use either the definite or indefinite article.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Sir,
Thanks for the reply.

Hello, may i ask for your help in clarifying these ones:

1. Which is correct, "a", "the", or "both"?

"When I see people ignoring (a/the) speech of a politician near a station, I always wonder what they are thinking."

2. If you use a plural noun, for example "statesmen"/"politicians", should it be "speeches"?

"When I see people walking without listening to statesmen giving (a speech/speeches) near a station, I always wonder how they're feeling."

Thank you in advance!

Hello Timmy Ferrer

You could use all of the options that you mention in those sentences, though they would mean different things. For example, in 1, if you said 'a speech', I would understand it to mean the formal talk (see the second meaning) that the politician is giving. If you said 'the speech', there are two possibilities. It could also refer the formal talk she is giving, but which has already been mentioned in some way. Or 'speech' could refer to the way she speaks (under the first meaning).

Hope this helps.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

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