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    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Ireland

    • Join Date: Oct 2010
    • Posts: 111
    #1

    a/the - talking about sth in general

    Which is correct when we talk generally about our preferences?

    My favourite means of transport is a / the car.

    My favourite animal is a / the cat.

    Thanks for replies .

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Ireland

    • Join Date: Apr 2014
    • Posts: 6
    #2

    Re: a/the - talking about sth in general

    With preferences the rule is usually to choose 'the' due to the context.

    In your examples, it would be:

    My favourite means of transport is the car.

    My favourite animal is the cat.


    Notice here it follows the usual article set of rules. Even though the speaker isn't referring to a specific or individual car or cat, in the context of the speech however they are referring to a specific or definite type, kind or means (as in your examples above) of transport or animal, which is their favourite.

    Hope that clears that up


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