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  1. #1
    Tan Elaine is offline Key Member
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    Default I have won a/the lottery.

    I have won a lottery.
    I have won the lottery.

    Is there a difference between the sentences?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    EnglishLearner1990 is offline Banned
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    Default Re: I have won a/the lottery.

    For first sentence, it means that the lottery , which you have won, is not known for your listener but the second one is known.
    (I am not a teacher.)

  3. #3
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: I have won a/the lottery.

    Only 'I have won the lottery' is colloquial.

    If your envious listeners are interested they will ask 'Which lottery?' Or 'How much have you won? Can you lend me a few thousand?'

  4. #4
    JMurray is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: I have won a/the lottery.

    not a teacher

    In practice, the distinction is not as clear-cut as EnglishLearner's response suggests.
    We very often say "the lottery", even if the specific lottery is not known to the listener, or no specific lottery is being referred to.
    "I hope to win the lottery before I'm 30".
    "In 1956 her mother won the lottery and the family moved to France".
    "He'll never be rich unless he wins the lottery one day".

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