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    • Join Date: Jun 2014
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    The definite article usage while talking about one instance of something

    Hello guys. Please, help me to understand following matters..
    If to say: "This is the movie I like" -
    1) It means this is the only movie I like?
    2) It means this is one of the movies I like and "the" is here just to emphasise or point to that particular movie? Or maybe "the" has another purpose here which I can't figure out?
    2nd question:
    Imagine there is a table in a room. On the table there lie several good pencils and several bad ones.
    1) Is it appropriate to say: "Look, this is the good pencil." Or I could say it only if there was one good pencil on the table, so "a" should be used?
    3d question:
    Imagine there are many books someone owes to somebody. One of them is in front of the speaker and listener, some are somewhere else, in another room, for instance.
    1) Is it correct to say: "This is the book I owe you." ?
    2) Can it have a meaning that these is just one of the books I owe you? Or "a" should be used (This is a book I owe you) ?
    It seems like I can't understand if the always means "the only one", or it can be also only like an emphasise/pointer to a particular instance?
    I see my question can be big enough, but I hope someone will help. These articles drive me mad :) Thanks.
    Last edited by nik4; 08-Oct-2014 at 15:28.

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