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Thread: The

  1. #21
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    Default Re: The

    Are these correct? What do these mean?
    1. Can you safely remove hardware?
    2. Can you safely revmoe the hardware? ('the' is in here, does this mean it is known to me and the listener?)

    3. Safely remove hardware please.
    4. Safely remove the hardware please.

    5. I observed a life of a drug dealer.
    6. I observed the life of a drug dealer. (Everyone knows what ‘life’ is, so ‘the’ is correct and ‘a’ is not right? What's 'the' referring to?)

    What do these mean?
    7. I observed a life of drug dealers.
    8. I observed the life of drug dealers.

    9. I observed life of drug dealers. (For this sentence, 'life' is plural. It can be countable right?)
    10. I observed life of a drug dealer.
    Last edited by jack; 07-Nov-2004 at 11:55.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: The

    2. Can you safely revmoe the hardware? ('the' is in here, does this mean it is known to me and the listener?)
    That's right.


    Both 3. and 4. are fine. 'the' is often omitted in instructions--saves time and space.

    6. I observed the life of a drug dealer. (Everyone knows what ‘life’ is, so ‘the’ is correct and ‘a’ is not right? What's 'the' referring to?)


    That's right.

    The rest are too odd.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: The

    What do these mean?
    1. This is most often used during the December holidays.
    2. This is most often used during December holidays.

  4. #24
    TheMadBaron Guest

    Default Re: The

    They both mean the same thing, but the first sounds more correct.

  5. #25
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    Default Re: The

    Thanks.

    I still don't really get this. Could you re-explain this to me? Thanks.

    What do these mean?
    1. This is most often used during the December holidays.
    2. This is most often used during December holidays.

    3. I think you tend to eat more in the winter. (Why do I need 'the' here? 'Winter' is specific?)
    4. I think you tend to eat more in winter.

  6. #26
    TheMadBaron Guest

    Default Re: The

    Quote Originally Posted by jack
    I still don't really get this. Could you re-explain this to me?
    I think I should apologise for my earlier answer. I've given it some more thought, and I guess they don't always mean the same thing. It's difficult to explain the difference, though, because so much depends on context.

    What do these mean?
    1. This is most often used during the December holidays.
    2. This is most often used during December holidays.
    You can use 'the' here, because people usually understand what the December holidays are (in their specific situation). For me, this would usually mean the Christmas and new year period, but holidays are different in different cultures, as you know.

    So, depending on the context, I might take 'the December holidays' to mean the Christmas and new year period (as these are my holidays - somebody from another culture might understand it differently) and I might take 'December holidays' to include other cultures' December holidays (Chanukah, Kwanzaa etc.) as well as Christmas....

    'The December holidays', then, are the holidays specific to the situation, and 'December holidays' are December holidays in general.

    If a Jewish friend told me that he was going to Israel for 'the December holidays' I would understand from the context that he was referring to the Jewish December holidays, and not to Christmas.

    Or....

    If my boss said that he wanted me to work during the December holidays, because we were so busy, that would be a shame, as I would have to miss some of the Christmas celebrations this year.... but I guess I'd just have to accept it.

    If my boss said he wanted me to work during "December holidays", that might be different.... there's no 'the', so I can't understand this to be specific to the situation of the coming Christmas period.... so does that mean my boss wants me to work during (the) December holidays EVERY year?
    Maybe I should look for a new job.

    3. I think you tend to eat more in the winter. (Why do I need 'the' here? 'Winter' is specific?)
    I don't think you do need it.

    4. I think you tend to eat more in winter.
    It means the same thing. At least, I think it does....

  7. #27
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    Default Re: The

    Thanks for the thorough expanation.

  8. #28
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    Default Re: The

    Are these correct? If not, why? What do they mean?
    1. In the 2003 election, there was a big massacre. (Why do I need 'the' here?)
    2. In 2003 electtion, there was a big massacre. (How come this is incorrect without 'the'?)

    3. On the Christmas day, we need to sell a lot of stuff. (Why is 'the' incorrect here?)

    What do these mean?
    4. On Christmas days, we need to sell a lot of stuff. (Does this mean every Christmas? )
    5. On Christmas day, we need to sell a lot of stuff.
    Last edited by jack; 30-Nov-2004 at 08:01.

  9. #29
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    Default Re: The

    1. In the 2003 election, there was a big massacre.
    => 'election' is made specific by '2003'.

    2. In 2003 election, there was a big massacre.
    => For the same reason that 1. is correct.

    3. On the Christmas day, we need to sell a lot of stuff.
    => Note, "Christmas" is capitalized. It's a proper noun, like Sam, Jack, Mary.

    4. On Christmas days, we need to sell a lot of stuff.
    => There is only one Christmas day, so -s is shouldn't be added.

  10. #30
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    Default Re: The

    Thanks.

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