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Articles, Determiners, and Quantifiers

  • There are 3 articles in the English Language.
  • They are:
    • a,
    • an, and
    • the
  • The articles are divided into two;
    • The definite article, and
    • The indefinite article
  • ‘A’ and ‘an’ are called the indefinite articles
  • ‘The’ is called the definite article.
Uses of Various Articles
  • ‘A’ precedes or is used to introduce a noun that begins with a consonant sound
    • For example:
      • A box
      • A goat
      • A cat
      • A book
      • A queen, etc.
  • ‘An’ is used before nouns beginning with any vowel sound:  a, e, i, o, u or silent h.
    • For example:
      • An iroko
      • An honor
      • An honest man
  • The indefinite article ‘a’ and ‘an’ are only used before singular nouns.
    • For example:
      • A boy came here
      • I was given an orange
  • ‘The’ is a definite article. The definite article occurs with both singular and plural nouns.
    • For example:
      • The book is interesting
      • The boy visited me yesterday
      • The book is on the table
Uses of the Definite Article
  • The definite article ‘the’ is used to refer to:
    1. Something already known. For example: I saw the girl. The teacher is here.
    2. Something which is already one. For example: The Sun. The Earth. The Moon. The Bible
    3. A whole class of things. For example: The lion is a brave animal
    4. It is used to refer to nature, like rivers, seas, range of mountains. For example: The Niger, The Atlantic Ocean, The Nile, The Atlas Mountain