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    #1

    What time did you finish work?

    Hello!

    Could you please explain to me, why don't we need an article before nouns in the following sentences:

    1. What time did you finish _ work?

    2. After you come back from _ holiday you feel yourself perfectly.

    I think that work in this meaning is uncountable noun, so that's the reason. Correct me please, if I wrong.

    Thank you!

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    #2

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    I can't think of a way to explain why there's no article in What time did you finish work?

    Sentence 2 doesn't make sense. Do you mean something like After you come from __ holiday, you feel great? In American English, you'd need an indefinite article before holiday.
    I am not a teacher.

  1. Boris Tatarenko's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    Actually, I can perfectly imagine a situation where the sentence "What time did/do you finish the work" is totally fine.

    If my memory serves me correctly, it's just a common phrase, so you'd better keep it in my mind. Moreover, yes, you're right. the noun "work" is uncountable.
    Please, correct all my mistakes. I should know English perfectly and if you show me my mistakes I will achieve my dream a little bit faster. A lot of thanks.

    Not a teacher nor a native speaker.

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    See definition A1 here. 'Work in that sense is used without an article.
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 27-Feb-2016 at 18:58.

  3. kilroy65's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    Sometimes, we don't use any article when we talk about things in general:

    I don't want to work. Work is boring.
    She's on holiday next week.
    Dogs make the best pets.



  4. kilroy65's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Tatarenko View Post
    Actually, I can perfectly imagine a situation where the sentence "What time did/do you finish the work" is totally fine.

    If my memory serves me correctly, it's just a common phrase, so you'd better keep it in my mind. Moreover, yes, you're right. the noun "work" is uncountable.
    Boris, I think "What time do you finish work" would be correct. Besides, "work" can also be countable in a different sense: "The works of Shakespeare are all great."

  5. Boris Tatarenko's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    Quote Originally Posted by kilroy65 View Post
    Boris, I think "What time do you finish work" would be correct. Besides, "work" can also be countable in a different sense: "The works of Shakespeare are all great."
    My bad. I mean that the word "work" in the meaning we're discussing here is always uncountable.

    I should have expressed my thought clearly.
    Please, correct all my mistakes. I should know English perfectly and if you show me my mistakes I will achieve my dream a little bit faster. A lot of thanks.

    Not a teacher nor a native speaker.

  6. kilroy65's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    Yes, you're right. In the OP's example, it is an uncountable noun, as stated in post #4.

  7. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    When we talk about "the works of Shakespeare" we are talking about his writings in total. We do not talk about one, two, or three works in that sense.

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    #10

    Re: What time did you finish work?

    As Tarheel said, the "works" of Shakespeare does not mean "work" is countable either.
    I am not a teacher.

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