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    • Join Date: Jun 2007
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    #1

    In (the/a) near future

    Hi folks,

    should there be an article in the phrase:

    In (the/a) near future people will....

    How can it be justified/explained? Is it just a phrase to remember? I understand the phrase near future as something indefinite so Id prefer using a.

    Should there be articles in phrases like in the past/in the present/in the future? Can we sometimes say in a past/in a present/in afuture?

    If yes, what rule is applied in these cases?

    Thanks for your patience.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,448
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    #2

    Re: In (the/a) near future

    "the near future" would be the accepted collocation.

    In general usage, there can only be one past, one present and one future, so "the" is used.

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