Articles for beginners

Articles are used as modifiers for nouns. However, some nouns do not need to be modified. In this lesson, we will learn about them.

What Are Articles in English?

What Are Articles?

Articles are small words that come before before a noun. They show if the noun refers to a particular example of something or to a general example of something.

English Articles

In English, we have two types of articles: 'the' is called the definite article and 'a' and 'an' are called the indefinite articles.

Definite Article Indefinite Article
The A/An

Indefinite Articles

'A' and 'an' are called indefinite articles. We use them with singular nouns when the listener does not know which one we are referring to.

We use 'a' before a consonant sound. We use 'an' before a vowel sound (a,e,i,o,u):

a an
a boy an apple
a woman an owl
a cat an earring
a strawberry an idea
a monkey an orange

Definite Article

'The' is a definite article. We use it before a singular or plural noun when the listener knows exactly which one we are referring to.

I ordered a pizza and a salad. The pizza was nice but the salad was disgusting.

That is the school that Mary went to.

Mary has a dog. The dog's name is Rover.

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Demonstrative Determiners

Demonstrative determiners in English are this, these, that and those. They are used to identify the person or thing that is being referred to.

Indefinite Determiners

Indefinite determiners are determiners that express quantity or the indefinite ideas of quality. They agree in number and gender with the noun they modify.

Relative Determiners

Relative determiners modify nouns within a relative clause. Follow the article to learn more about them.

Indefinite Articles

The indefinite articles in English language are 'a/an'. They refer to a noun for the first time or a general noun when its identity is unknown.

Definite Article

The definite article in English language is 'the'. It is used before a noun to show that the noun is known to the reader. Learn about this useful article!

Zero Article

Some nouns and noun phrases are used with no articles preceding them. In this article, we will learn about them.

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