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  1. Unregistered
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    #1

    a, an, the

    Hi there,

    I read a thread in a dictionary:

    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in law/in the constitution.

    How about '...in the law', OR 'in laws'?


    simon

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    #2

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
    Hi there,

    I read a thread in a dictionary:

    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in law/in the constitution.

    How about '...in the law', OR 'in laws'?


    simon
    Both are possible in terms of generalisation.
    (not a teacher)

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    #3

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
    Hi there,

    I read a thread in a dictionary:

    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in law/in the constitution.

    How about '...in the law', OR 'in laws'?


    simon
    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in laws -general use of the definite article.


    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in the law X - specific law

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    #4

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by teia_petrescu View Post
    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in laws -general use of the definite article.
    The right of freedom of speech is enshrined in the law X - specific law
    teia_petrescu,my pardon for saying the otherwise.

    "When we wish to talk or think about a class of objects in the abstract, we can use "THE + SINGULAR NOUN". The = one (imaginary) member of the class is used to represent the whole class.

    Could I apply this rule to the sentence? Thanks for advice.

    (not a teacher)

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    #5

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by albertino View Post
    teia_petrescu,my pardon for saying the otherwise.

    "When we wish to talk or think about a class of objects in the abstract, we can use "THE + SINGULAR NOUN". The = one (imaginary) member of the class is used to represent the whole class.

    Could I apply this rule to the sentence? Thanks for advice.

    (not a teacher)
    Hi Albertino

    Generic reference is used when one refers to a whole group or class, to generalize about all possible members of a group:

    Children like sweets - no definite article [generic use]

    The children in that school don`t like sweets [ although it`s hard to believe that there are children who don`t like sweets ]- specific use of the definite article. OR,

    The Chinese have an ancient culture. -definite article plus plural nationality noun.
    Chinese is a difficult language. - no definite article with language [general statement]

    We use the definite article with reference to a known object or to an object that the listener or reader is already acquainted with.

    The, when placed before the pluralized abstract noun, marks it as half abstract or a common noun.
    Click on the following link :USES OF THE DEFINITE ARTICLE / LousyWriter.com teaches you how to write better and how to write correctly
    Last edited by Teia; 29-Sep-2007 at 09:07.

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    #6

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by teia_petrescu View Post
    Hi Albertino

    Generic reference is used when one refers to a whole group or class, to generalize about all possible members of a group:

    Children like sweets - no definite article [generic use]

    The children in that school don`t like sweets [ although it`s hard to believe that there are children who don`t like sweets ]- specific use of the definite article. OR,

    The Chinese have an ancient culture. -definite article plus plural nationality noun.
    Chinese is a difficult language. - no definite article with language [general statement]

    We use the definite article with reference to a known object or to an object that the listener or reader is already acquainted with.

    The, when placed before the pluralized abstract noun, marks it as half abstract or a common noun.
    Click on the following link :USES OF THE DEFINITE ARTICLE / LousyWriter.com teaches you how to write better and how to write correctly
    Thanks for the swift reply, teia_petrescu.

    Can I say "the law" is one of the class nouns as shown at no.183 of uses of the definite article.

  2. Bushwhacker's Avatar
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    #7

    Cool Re: a, an, the

    So why we say, i.e. "The movies at Cannes Film Festival" and not "The movies at the Cannes Film Festival"? We are talking about a very specific Film Festival , that in Cannes.


    Cheers,

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    #8

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhacker View Post
    So why we say, i.e. "The movies at Cannes Film Festival" and not "The movies at the Cannes Film Festival"? We are talking about a very specific Film Festival , that in Cannes.


    Cheers,
    (Mind you, the following is extracted from a grammar website in the USA. BrE Teachers might disagree.)


    Q. Are both sentences correct:
    1. Parents' Day is on the seventh of December.
    1a.The Parents' Day is on the seventh of December.
    2. Mid-Autumn Festival is on the twelfth of September.
    2a. The Mid-Autumn Festival is on the twelfth of September
    A. Normally, if a day has a special name, such as Parents' Day, it doesn't have an article. So, usually, Parents' Day and Mid-Autumn Festival would be correct. However, the mid-autumn festival could also be correct, if you were not referring to the name of the festival, but just the description.

    Source: ELI Grammar Hotline -- Articles
    Last edited by albertino; 29-Sep-2007 at 14:46.

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    #9

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by albertino View Post
    Thanks for the swift reply, teia_petrescu.

    Can I say "the law" is one of the class nouns as shown at no.183 of uses of the definite article.
    Hi Albertino

    I am not sure if we can use the definite article with law as one of the class nouns.
    We can use the in front of the noun law if we refer to a specific law, although , while googling I read `dictionary of the law` meaning not a specific law but laws in general.

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    #10

    Re: a, an, the

    Quote Originally Posted by teia_petrescu View Post
    Hi Albertino

    I am not sure if we can use the definite article with law as one of the class nouns.
    We can use the in front of the noun law if we refer to a specific law, although , while googling I read `dictionary of the law` meaning not a specific law but laws in general.
    That is the tricky goblin who has been fooling us non-native speakers around.

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