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  1. rainous's Avatar
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    #1

    the house/ houses

    It's one of those surveillance cameras that are usually installed around houses.

    It's one of those surveillance cameras that are usually installed around the house.


    Hi,

    I somewhat feel more comfortable using the first one but I am wondering if the second one is also acceptable in the sense that "the house" can mean "houses in general" by using the definite article and the singular form of noun.

    Are they both acceptable?

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    #2

    Re: the house/ houses

    In NA, 'around the house' generally means indoors.

  2. rainous's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: the house/ houses

    Maybe I picked rather misleading examples.


    How about these:

    People usually live in houses.

    People usually live in the house.


    Do they absolutely mean the same?

  3. 5jj's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: the house/ houses

    Quote Originally Posted by rainous View Post
    People usually live in houses.
    People usually live in the house.

    Do they absolutely mean the same?
    No. Only the first works here.

  4. rainous's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: the house/ houses

    Is this because "people" is plural and it has to be consistent with "houses"?

    How about these:

    The human being usually lives in the house.
    Human beings usually live in houses.

  5. 5jj's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: the house/ houses

    Quote Originally Posted by rainous View Post
    The human being usually lives in the a house. 'A human being ...' is more common.
    Human beings usually live in houses.
    5

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: the house/ houses

    Quote Originally Posted by rainous View Post
    It's one of those surveillance cameras that are usually installed around houses.

    It's one of those surveillance cameras that are usually installed around the house.


    Hi,

    I somewhat feel more comfortable using the first one but I am wondering if the second one is also acceptable in the sense that "the house" can mean "houses in general" by using the definite article and the singular form of noun.

    Are they both acceptable?
    I wouldn't object to either of these.

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