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  1. #1
    rou is offline Newbie
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    Default Should there be a "the" when mentioning a festival

    After so many years of learning English the language, I still find myself stumbling on seemingly simple questions all the time - it's a bit frustrating. This is one of those times and I have come to ask you good people to help, again.

    When asked to write about his favorite festival, my son (a primary 3 student) started with "My favorite festival is the Chinese New Year", but the teacher corrected him by saying that the article "the" should not have been there. My own opinion is that it sounds easier on the ear to have the "the" in there and at least it's not wrong to have it there - meaning she should not have deducted marks for that. So, what's your take on this?

  2. #2
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    probus is offline Key Member
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    My ear agrees with yours in the case you gave. But mostly big festivals do not need an article.
    Last edited by probus; 05-Jul-2013 at 05:12.

  3. #3
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Should there be a "the" when mentioning a festival

    I would not use "the" before "Chinese New Year".

    Bear in mind that, in BrE at least, a "festival" is usually a music event (ie Glastonbury) or a street parade celebrating something (ie Gay Pride or the Notting Hill Carnival). We don't usually use the word to refer to a public holiday based on a time of year (Christmas, New Year, Easter, Hallowe'en).

    If you asked a BrE speaker, "What's your favourite festival?", you would get in response things like "Oh, it's Glastonbury, definitely. I've been every year for twenty years. I love listening to live music while drowning in mud!" or "I've never been to one so I don't know".
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  4. #4
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    charliedeut is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Should there be a "the" when mentioning a festival

    Quote Originally Posted by rou View Post
    After so many years of learning English the language, I still find myself stumbling on seemingly simple questions all the time - it's a bit frustrating.This happens often to me, too, and probably to many learners. This is one of those times and I have come to ask you good people to help, again.I feel flattered by your warm heart , but not all of us are that good
    charliedeut
    Please be aware that I'm neither a native English speaker nor a teacher.

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