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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Hi Deniseko,

There are some general rules for using articles with place names on our definite article: the page, but I'm afraid right now that page isn't working for technical reasons. Therefore I'm going to refer you to another page that has the same content as a temporary solution.

In the end, however, this is mostly a matter of convention, as of course Buckingham Palace and Edinburg Castle, like the Eiffel Tower, are also well-known buildings.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par cbenglish le ven 09/03/2018 - 10:01

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Dear Sirs, Please look at the following sentence: "The Korean war never formally ended and the threat of a new devastating conflict has hung over the peninsula for decades." My question is about the article use before the noun threat. In this sentence, can I say:....and a threat of a new devastating... What if threat is used without an article (e.g.,...and threat of a new devastating...) since it appears to me that threat is an abstract noun in the sentence. Thank you very much for your wonderful support.

Hello cbenglish,

The definite article is used here because 'threat' is not general but is defined. It is not any devastating conflict which is referenced but a specific devastating conflict: renewed conflict in the aforementioned Korean War.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par cbenglish le ven 02/03/2018 - 12:50

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Dear Sirs, Is the use of the before the phrase 'book nerd' in the following sentence correct? "You may not know this, but I am quite the book nerd – a voracious reader." Since the phrase 'book nerd' appears for the first time, I feel like it should be 'a book nerd.' Am I right in my thinking, or the both will be correct? Thank you very much.

Hello cbenglish,

Yes, it is correct but you could also say 'a book nerd'.

The phrase 'quite the...' is used with many nouns, often in a humorous way:

Your little boy is quite the explorer, isn't he?

You're quite the computer programmer, aren't you?

My boss is quite the little dictator.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Adill le jeu 22/02/2018 - 19:01

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Hi Choose I play football at(a-the-no article ) school. Please explain the answer

Soumis par Kirk le ven 23/02/2018 - 06:31

En réponse à par Adill

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Hello Adill,

We normally ask that our users tell us what they think the answer is. Most of the time, no article is used here, though 'a' and 'the' are also possible. It really depends on the context and meaning, which are missing here.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Rox4090 le lun 19/02/2018 - 08:38

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How could we use the phrases “ in fact” or the word “indeed”? This is a quite complicated matter to learn this. I have read about their usages on the website, but could not understand unfortunately. Please explain in simple words how can we use it, why we use it and when we use it. Give some examples please if possible. Regards, Rox

Hello Rox4090,

Have you tried reading the entries for 'indeed' and 'in fact' in different dictionaries? I've put links to the Cambridge Dictionary, but I'd also recommend trying others, e.g. Oxford, Merriam-Webster, Longman and Collins. The definitions should help and then the example sentences should also be really useful.

If you have any specific questions after reading through those, please let us know.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par clover315 le lun 19/02/2018 - 05:47

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Hello, I'd like to ask a question about exclamator. Take an example: How interesting the films are! In writing, is it also correct to write "How interesting films are!". Can I leave out "the" in that case? Thanks in advance.

Hello clover315,

Yes, you can say this without the definite article. However, the meaning changes:

How interesting the films are! [a particular group or selection of films, such as those being shown at a film festival]

How interesting films are! [films in general]

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Jaypee le jeu 15/02/2018 - 14:28

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Is it neccessary to place determiners and quantifiers just before the nouns??

Hello Jaypee,

Adjectives and numbers come between determiners and quantifiers and the nouns they accompany:

The red house

The two sheep

Other than these the determiner or quantifier generally come immediately before the noun unless the word order is changed for rhetorical effect:

There are many problems, in my opinion.

There are many - in my opinion - problems.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Jaypee le jeu 15/02/2018 - 04:32

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Can adverb be preceded by determiner or quantifiers???

Hello Jaypee,

As is explained above, determiners and quantifiers come at the head of a noun phrase. In other words, they modify nouns. They do not modify adverbs. Only adverbs modify other adverbs.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Zeeshan Siddiqii le mar 13/02/2018 - 04:40

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Hello, Are both correct? God forgive all of your sins. God forgive all your sins.

Soumis par Peter M. le mar 13/02/2018 - 07:19

En réponse à par Zeeshan Siddiqii

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Hello Zeeshan Siddiqii,

Yes, both sentences are grammatically correct and there is no difference in meaning.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par putridp9 le dim 04/02/2018 - 08:22

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i want to ask , why the word "any" use in positive sentences ? in the book I read any not for positive sentence but for negative sentence

Hello putridp9,

The determiner 'any' has two main meanings: one is to refer to indefinite quantities and the other means something like 'it doesn't matter which one'.

When 'any' is referring to indefinite quantities, we typically use it only in negative or interrogative sentences.

When 'any' means 'it doesn't matter which one' (which is the way it is used above), then it can be used in an affirmative sentences.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Ilariuccia le lun 29/01/2018 - 16:34

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Hello again and thanks for your support....I have a question about prepositions. Starting to write about a past holiday, what's the correct preposition to use before this noun? On my last holiday I went to.... Or For my last holiday I went to.... Thanks a lot.

Hello Ilariuccia,

In this context we would say 'for'. We could use 'on' when describing things that happened during the holiday:

For my last holiday I went to Cyprus.

On/During my last holiday I met a really nice guy who worked as a musician.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Marwa.Mohamed le ven 26/01/2018 - 23:02

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Hi Is it right to say: I've learned English since I was five ? Is it formal? or should I say five years old when I was talking formally. Thanks

Soumis par Peter M. le sam 27/01/2018 - 08:53

En réponse à par Marwa.Mohamed

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Hello Marwa.Mohamed,

You can say '...since I was five' or '...since I was five years old' here. Neither is informal, though the second sounds a little more offical than the first in my view.

Your sentence is not incorrect but I think the present perfect continuous would be a more natural choice:

I've been learning English since...

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Pavan Kaur le lun 01/01/2018 - 14:34

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Hi Task A and Task B have to be done/has to be done. in the above sentence what verb has to be used has/have?

Soumis par Kirk le lun 01/01/2018 - 15:37

En réponse à par Pavan Kaur

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Hello Pavan Kaur,

Since the subject ('Task A and Task B') is plural, the verb should also be plural ('have'). Though I'd probably rephrase it slightly if I were writing it as 'Tasks A and B have to be done'.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Rox4090 le mer 27/12/2017 - 04:49

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No queries are being answered. Is the team answering queries is on the holiday? Feeling dejected ...

Hello Rox4090,

I've just answered one of your comments. We are indeed working less these days due to the holiday, though we are replying to several comments each day. We're sorry if you are disappointed, but please also remember that we offer this service free of charge.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Rox4090 le dim 24/12/2017 - 16:52

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We vowed to return to the restaurant, for the food there was the best we had ever eaten. Which sentence type is this? After comma, ‘ for’ was used for which reason. If it was explained by breaking into parts, it would be appreciable. Regards, Rox4090

Hello Rox4090,

'for' is a subordingating conjunction that is used quite commonly in more formal writing or speaking to mean 'because'. This is a complex sentence and 'for' begins a subordinate clause.

Does that make sense?

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Rox4090 le jeu 21/12/2017 - 04:24

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Hi, Regarding colon usage: How can we judge if my second sentence after a colon is explaining or justify the previous one? Please answer it. Please check if the sentence written below is correct. Example: Defunct machine was sold to me: companies are ripping customers. Regards, Rox4090

Soumis par Kirk le jeu 21/12/2017 - 19:46

En réponse à par Rox4090

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Hello Rox4090,

It's difficult to explain this kind of thing, but in general what comes after the colon should give more information about the results or reason of the first, though other relationships are also possible.

As for your sentence, 'defunct machine' should have an article before it, probably 'a', and the phrasal verb is 'rip off': 'A defunct machine was sold to me: companies are ripping off customers.' With those small adjustments, your sentence is correct.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par aseel aftab le mer 20/12/2017 - 22:16

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Why we say photos from austrailian squad not from the austrailian squad. As we are talking about a particular squad.

Hello aseel aftab,

I think 'from the Australian squad' is correct here. Although I don't know the full context in which the sentence appears 'from Australian squad' does not look correct to me.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Rox4090 le mar 19/12/2017 - 03:29

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Please see this sentence. As for my next directorial, I have been working on a script. But I am not fully satisfied with it. It make sense to talk about it,only once it is ready. Last sentence “ it” pronoun comes thrice in the sentence and creating confusion. What “it” refers to? How two “it”” are present in the sentence ? Please explain.

Hello Rox4090,

As I mentioned in another comment, you have to make your best guess given the context. In this case, common sense suggests that 'it' refers to the script (except where 'it' is a dummy subject at the beginning of the third sentence).

Our role here in the comments is to help our users get the most out of our site. We're happy to answer questions directly related to what's on our pages and we occasionally answer other less directly related questions. But I'm afraid we're not able to answer so many questions about sentences that don't come from our site, as they often contain errors or structures which are not standard.

The third sentence you ask about, for example, sounds unnatural to me. I wouldn't recommend regarding it as a model English sentence.

You might want to consider a course at a British Council centre in Israel, where you could get much more personalised attention from your teacher.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

 

Soumis par Rox4090 le lun 18/12/2017 - 04:24

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I mean to say this or this issue which one will add more cohesiveness to the context.

Soumis par Rox4090 le lun 18/12/2017 - 04:22

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Hi, Please check this. In UK, Crime rate is increasing on a rampant pace.This/This issue can be resolved by countermeasures. In the above sentence, please check the word ‘ This”. Is rightly used and which one makes the text more cohesive? Regards, Rox4090

Soumis par Peter M. le lun 18/12/2017 - 06:00

En réponse à par Rox4090

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Hello Rox4090,

Both 'this' and 'this issue' are fine here. I think the second is probably better in terms of style and clarity.

This question is almost identical to one you posted below. Please post questions once only. Asking the same question multiple times does not make the answer come any quicker and in fact slows the process down. We read every question before it appears on the page and answer as quickly as we can but we are a small team here and sometimes it take a little while before we can respond, especially if a user posts many questions.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

In terms of cohesiveness, how do you rate it? Is there any other ideas to improve on cohesiveness? Also, how a person can check the cohesiveness in its written writing? Regards, Rox4090

Soumis par Rox4090 le dim 17/12/2017 - 03:05

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Hi.Please look at this sentence. In 2015, a team of the national Urban livelihoods Mission had inspected these shelters, following which the muncipal corporation authorites claimed that they will be given a facelift, in addition to the provision of food. In this Sentence, the pronoun “THEY”is referring to “ authorities or shelters. As a rule, pronoun refers near noun only. But in the sentence authorities is coming near and not the shelters. This is confusing me. Please explain, so that I could improve on.

Hello Rox4090,

What I understand is that 'they' refers to 'these shelters'. Pronouns don't necessarily refer to nouns that are very close by. Usually we can infer what they refer to from the context and common sense. For example, in this case it would be odd for the authorities to get a facelift and be provisioned with food, whereas that would make perfect sense for the shelters.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par Rox4090 le jeu 14/12/2017 - 14:28

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Hi , In regard to use the demonstrative “this”, here a few sentences are written. Crime rate is increasing due to the deteriorating law and order. This isssue could only be solved if countermeasures would be taken. See usage of the word” this”. Is it adding cohesiveness in the sentence? Is it used correctly?

Soumis par aseel aftab le jeu 14/12/2017 - 13:21

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Why we say near bath island not near the bath island? Tell me a website where these exceptions are descriptively mentioned.

Hello aseel aftab,

Bath Island is a proper name and we do not use articles with names. This is a consistent rule, so we use no article with other names: Japan, Madagascar, Trinidad and Tobago. However, we use the definite article with descriptive names which include the word 'of' (The United States of America, The Isle of Skye), or whose name is a plural (The West Indies, The Falkland Islands).

You can see the rules for article use on our articles pages - there are links on this page just under the task window.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par aseel aftab le jeu 14/12/2017 - 12:39

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Tiger,animal equal to lion in size,is native of Asia. So can I say" Tiger,the animal equal to a lion in size,is native of Asia." Is this insertion of article correct in the latter sentence?

Hello aseel aftab,

We would not use 'the' here because if you say 'the animal equal to a lion in size' then you are suggesting that only one animal is equal to a lion in size. We would say 'an animal equal...' because there are a number of animals equal to a lion in size and the tiger is only one of these.

The use of articles for general meaning is a complex one. If you want to see a summary of how they are used then please take a look at my explanation to another user.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Soumis par aseel aftab le jeu 14/12/2017 - 12:35

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Do you see a blue sky or the blue sky? Because we are talking about a particular sky.

Hello aseel aftab,

I'd need to see the complete context and understand what you want to say to give you the best advice on this, but in general we speak about the sky, as there is only one.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team