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    • Join Date: Jun 2005
    • Posts: 100

    Re: The issue of the articles - "the "

    "the" before "hospital" is used in American English but not in British English

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      • Native Language:
      • Lithuanian
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      • Lithuania
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    • Join Date: Aug 2005
    • Posts: 8

    Re: The issue of the articles - "the "

    Quote Originally Posted by kaboodleus
    Use "the" when:
    --the listener already knows which object is being discussed, or
    --the listener will immediately figure out which object is being discussed

    In this case, the listener can immediately figure out that my eye is being discussed, because I have said that it hit me in the eye.

    You could argue that since I have *two* eyes the listener can't figure out which specific eye is being discussed. However by saying "the eye" I'm implying that it doesn't matter which of my two eyes it is--if it mattered I could say "the left eye" or "the right eye."

    There are many situations in which I would say "the" even when mentioning something for the first time. If I say to my husband, "I saw something in the newspaper today--" I'm assuming that he will immediately figure out that the newspaper is the one that is delivered to our house every day. If I had said "a newspaper" it would suggest that I had seen some other newspaper when I was out and about.

    If I say "She went to the library" I expect the listener to immediately know which library I'm talking about--perhaps the school library--even if we haven't talked about that library for months.

    Let me know if you need more examples. I got a million of them!
    Which article do we have to use in this: "<...> then we watched TV, ate (the/a/-) Christmas cake and went to (the/a/-) garden". Why the other alternatives aren't (are?) acceptable?

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