Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: a or the

    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Serbian
      • Home Country:
      • Serbia
      • Current Location:
      • Serbia

    • Join Date: Feb 2012
    • Posts: 16
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    a or the

    How is it possible that you can say: a birth of a child, a funeral of a parent... I would say: the birth, the funeral...There is only one...Am I right?

  1. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 21,606
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: a or the

    Quote Originally Posted by mina24 View Post
    How is it possible that you can say: a birth of a child, a funeral of a parent... I would say: the birth, the funeral...There is only one...Am I right?
    It depends on the context. (You'll hear that a lot here). No, you're not right in saying that it should be "the" without at least knowing the whole sentence, and perhaps the background or the utterance.

    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • Serbian
      • Home Country:
      • Serbia
      • Current Location:
      • Serbia

    • Join Date: Feb 2012
    • Posts: 16
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: a or the

    It is very hard to go to a funeral of a parent. A birth of a child is something magnificent. Correct??

  2. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 21,606
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: a or the

    Quote Originally Posted by mina24 View Post
    It is very hard to go to a funeral of a parent. A birth of a child is something magnificent. Correct??
    The first sounds OK. I'd use "the" for the second.

    Here are some I might use 'a' for.
    "You don't expect to see a birth of a child at a rock concert." (You could use 'the')
    "It's always sad when we have a funeral of a parent." (You could use 'the')

    It might be correct to say "the X of a Y" in most cases. My point is that this doesn't make it impossible to say "a/an X of a Y".

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •