Tag Archives: Articles

The difference between countable and uncountable nouns (unit and mass nouns)

Distinguishing between countable nouns (unit nouns) and uncountable nouns (mass nouns) can be very difficult. This area is the source of many mistakes. Unit nouns have two forms, singular and plural: e.g. a chair, chairs. You can say 1 chair, … Continue reading

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The “family is” or the “family are”?

Collective nouns are words that describe groups of people or things, e.g. “family” or “team”. Grammatically they are singular, but as they describe more than one individual, they may also take the plural form of a verb or use a … Continue reading

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How to use initials and acronyms

Non-native English speakers often find it difficult to know when to use “a”, “the” or no article with initials and acronyms. The key is to know what the initials mean. If the initials are a proper noun (name), then you … Continue reading

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The difference between “in future” and “in the future”

Consider these examples: You should be more careful in future. In the future we plan to make significant investments in Romania and Bulgaria. In the first example “in future” means “from now on and always”. It is often used in … Continue reading

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A brief note on how to use “a/an” and “the”: General and specific references in English

This area causes various problems for Polish people writing in English. The main problem is the correct use of articles (“a” and “the”), but another problem arises from the fact that in Polish you can use the singular to make … Continue reading

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Giving notice

There are two ways of expressing a notice period, as follows: Under Clause 4.2 one month’s notice is required in order to terminate the agreement. Under Clause 4.2 a one-month notice period is required in order to terminate the agreement. … Continue reading

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“Few” and “a few”; “little” and “a little”

There’s a big difference between “few” and “a few”. In fact they have opposite meanings. If you say, for example, “I have few friends”, it means you do not have many friends. However, if you say, “I have a few … Continue reading

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