Determiner Order

As you know, pre-determiners, determiners, and post-determiners can be used together to modify a noun. In this lesson, we will learn about their order.

Determiner Order in English

Why Do You Learn Determiner Orders?

There are pre-determiners, determiners, and post-determiners in English which can or cannot be used at the same time.
All of them are followed by a head noun. Take a look at the determiners on the list:

  • pre-determiners
  1. multipliers
  2. fractions
  3. intensifier
  4. some distributives
  • central determiners
  • post-determiners
  1. numerals
  2. sequencers
  3. quantifier
  4. some distributives

How Do We Use Determiners?

As you know there are different types of pre-determiners, determiners, and post-determiners. These determiners are used in special orders followed by a head noun to make noun phrases. Let us take a look at the determiners that can be used with each other at the same time:

Pre-determiners and Central Determiners

Some pre-determiners cannot be used with central determiners. Check out the table below to get to know them:

Art. Dem. Pos. Int.
Multiplier
Fraction
Intensifier
Distributive

Multipliers and Central Determiners

Multipliers can be placed before every central determiner except interrogative determiners. Here are a few examples that may help you understand them better:

We exercise twice a week.

These shoes are twice my size.

He ate twice this amount last year.

Twice what color is your favorite?

Fractions and Central Determiners

Fractions can be used with every central determiner except the interrogative determiners. Here are the examples:

It took half a minute.

She wears half my size.

Half those animals are going to be extinct.

Half whose shoes are those?

Intensifiers with Central Determiners

Intensifiers are used with articles and not any other central determiners. Here are a few examples:

He is quite a man.

He is such my friend.

I can't solve such this problem.

Quite whose books are those?

Distributives and Central Determiners

Distributives are used with every type of central determiner except interrogative determiners. Here are the examples that can help you learn more about them:

All the animals were kept in cages.

All my friends are at the party.

All these people are supposed to get injected.

All what class did go to the picnic?

using pre-determiners to modify a noun

Post-determiners and Central Determiners

Some post-determiners are used alone with no determiners preceding them. As a result, it is important to know which post-determiners can appear with central determiners at the same time. Here are the determiners and post-determiners on the table:

Numerals Quantifiers Distributives
Art.
Dem.
Pos.
Int.

Numerals and Central Determiners

Only interrogative determiners cannot be used with numeral post-determiners. Check out the examples to help you learn better:

The next session is on Wednesday.

Those few last moments made eternal flames.

Your previous therapy didn't end well.

What next school do you go to?

Quantifiers with Central Determiners

Quantifiers cannot be used with interrogative and possessive determiners. Check out these examples for more clarification:

We have a few plans.

I talked to my few friends.

What many issues are there in your mind?

Those few moments together were precious.

Distributives with Central Determiners

Distributive determiners are only used alone as a post-determiner, but they cannot be used with central determiners at the same time. Check these examples out:

Each boy has his own characteristics in this class.

Either room is suitable to become the guest room.

Can We Use Post-determiners and Pre-determiners Together?

There are only a few structures of post-determiners and pre-determiners that can be used together at the same time. Here are the structures:

  • distributive (pre-determiner) + article + numeral + head noun

Here is an example of this structure:

I will have fun all the next summer.

  • multiplier (pre-determiner) + possessive + numerals (post-determiner)

Check the example out to get to know this structure:

Five-eighth of my previous class got graduated.

  • distributive (pre-determiner) + demonstrative + numeral (post-determiner)

In this example, the above structure is used:

All those two nights I was playing the piano.

  • distributive (pre-determiner) + possessive + numeral (post-determiner)

Check out the example for more clarification:

Both my previous classes were tiring.

Determiners of the Same Category

Two central determiners or two pre-determiners cannot be used with each other at the same time, but there are two post-determiners that are possible to be used with each other. Here is the structure and the example:

  • numeral (sequencer) + quantifier + etc.

I will give birth to my baby in the next few months.

Partitives as Pre-determiners

We can use both definite and indefinite partitives as pre-determiners. But remember, the first part of the partitive which contains a number, or article (a, one, two, one hundred, etc.) is included in the structure of the partitive, therefore the whole formation is used as a pre-determiner. Here are the examples:

Many of their problems are because of the baby.

Their is a central determiner that is used after the partitive pre-determiner.

Three pieces of the pizza are left in the box.

Review

Pre-determiners cannot be used with every central determiner pr post-determiner at the same time. So there is a particular order for each determiner to be used in combination with another.

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Determiners

Determiners are words that can define nouns. So, what are the differences between determiners and adjectives?

Pre-determiners

Pre-determiners are used to modify a noun. They are placed before the central determiners. Follow the article to learn about them.

Post-determiners

Post-determiners are terms that are used after central determiners. They are all used to modify the noun phrase. follow the article to learn more.

Possessive Determiners

Possessive determiners are types of function words used before a noun to show ownership or possession such as 'my,' 'your,' and 'his.'

Interrogative Determiners

There are three interrogative determiners in English: what, which, and whose. In this lesson we will go through each one of them.

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.

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