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  1. #1
    chandrala is offline Newbie
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    use of definite article 'the'

    Can anyone please tell me when excatly we use definite article 'the?'

  2. #2
    Gillnetter is offline Key Member
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    Re: use of definite article 'the'

    Quote Originally Posted by chandrala View Post
    Can anyone please tell me when excatly exactly we use the definite article 'the?'
    One would usually use the article "the" when referring to a specific thing. For example,

    "I want the blue car" - of all possible cars, I prefer the blue one.
    "The man you want is wearing a tall hat" - again, of all possible men, look for the one with the tall hat.

    If you write, "I want a blue car", then any car is acceptable as long as it is blue.

  3. #3
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Re: use of definite article 'the'

    Welcome to the forums, chandrala.

    Note that your excellent thread title has found several Similar Threads below.

    Rover

  4. #4
    Jadoon 84 is offline Member
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    Re: use of definite article 'the'

    Dear chandrala
    I am a student like you, I have found the below answer in internet (http://www.english-test.net/lessons/16/index.html) couple of months ago.

    Definite — the

    Uses

    • Before nouns of which there is only one.
      "The earth is round."
    • Before a noun which has become definite as a result of being mentioned a second time.
      "We saw a good film last night. It was the film you recommended."
    • Before a noun made definite by the addition of a phrase or clause.
      "The woman dressed in black."
    • Before a noun which, by reason of locality, can represent only one particular thing.
      "There’s a bee in the kitchen."
    • Before superlatives and "first", "second" and "only"
      "The longest river in the world."
    • Before singular nouns used to represent a class of objects.
      "The donkey is a very obstinate animal."
    • Before an adjective used to represent a class of persons.
      "That tax hurts the rich."
    • Before names of seas, rivers, chains of mountains, groups of islands and plural names of countries.
      "the Pacific Ocean, the Thames, the Andes, the West Indies, the Netherlands"
    • Before musical instruments.
      "She plays the piano"


    Not Used

    • Before countries, towns, proper names.
      "Charlie lived in Chicago in America"
    • Before abstract nouns.
      "Jealousy can be dangerous."
    • Before parts of the body and articles of clothing — these normally prefer a possessive adjective.
      "Lift your left arm."
      "He removed his hat."
    Last edited by Jadoon 84; 16-Oct-2012 at 13:55. Reason: Forgot to post the link

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: use of definite article 'the'

    Jadoon, please give references and link to your source.

    Also, I would say that this is something of an oversimplification. For example, you can use the definite article before an abstract noun- your example talks about jealousy in general, but it can be specific.

  6. #6
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is online now Moderator
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    Re: use of definite article 'the'

    To state that "the" is not used before parts of the body or articles of clothing is, frankly, nonsense.

    The hat looks better on her than it does on me.
    I can see that the left arm is broken in four places.
    My parents bought me a sweater and a jacket for Christmas. I didn't like the jacket so I returned it to the shop.
    The head is the part of the body which needs to be protected the most in a car crash.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

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