Nice hat - the answers
Are you still wondering why they use the articles a, the, or no article at all?
Now, I would also like you to consider these examples.
The first is a typical student error, and a written instruction:
I would like you to move chair to the table.
What chair? A chair - one of many alternatives? The chair - the only one in the room or the chair that you know about? Or is it a missed letter - a frequent error - chairs?
I would like you to move chairs to the table.
What chairs? Chairs in general - which can be got from anywhere, even from a shop, or some specific group of chairs? (If it is the latter, it should be the chairs.)
I would like you to move a chairs to the table.
A common error with students. Does the speaker mean one chair or more than one chair?
How about this example:
I've had enough of this. I'm going out to visit the Burger King.
The context is clear if you know what is being visited, but if not, is the speaker going to visit Burger King ( a restaurant), A Burger King (One of many Burger King restaurants) or, as has been said, The Burger King? If so, than this last example is a person who is going to meet the King of Burgers!
These examples show how important articles in English really are. Of course, it is still possible to understand a sentence if you do not use articles. Often the context of the situation where these words are spoken make it clear enough. For example:
I went to railway station where I waited for train that was bringing important visitor to factory.
But for English native speakers there will be that uncontrollable desire to correct you:
I went to the railway station where I waited for the train that was bringing an important visitor to the factory.
To understand a little bit about a, an and the, we have to understand a few other things about English grammar that will help us to learn that much more about articles.
There is a good chance that you already know all about many of the points that I am going to describe in the early stages of this 'course', but it is always good just to remind yourselves. But if not, then it is here where you are also going to find out about noun phrases, determiners, and vowels and consonants!
So if you are still excited about learning as much as there is to know about the wonderful world of A, AN, THE and ZERO ARTICLE, then click on the NEXT button below.
There is quite a lot of information to take in, and this information will become more complex as you go along. But as long as you start at the beginning, then hopefully you will have more of an understanding as to how this difficult and sometimes complicated area of grammar works.
So good luck, and I hope that you will understand far more about articles than you did at the beginning!
Here are the sections. In each point, there will be questions to check your understanding. Please take as much time as you need to read and to understand each point. It would be a good idea not to try and do all of these in one session, particularly if you are really not sure how articles work.
THE NICE HAT.
A NICE HAT.