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    • Join Date: Oct 2008
    • Posts: 22
    #1

    the

    "exams week"
    someone i know told me "it's exams week."

    But as far as i know, there should be 'the' or 'a' before noun if 'week' is a countable noun, especially.

    How should i understand this?

    And can i say " how is the life in Japan?"
    while i am confused in using the and a, i thougt that when i am expecting there would be something special in Japan life, i could use 'the' as a specific meaning.
    But it seems that everybody just say how's life? What is more confusing is when asking weahter people seem to say "how's the weather" with the.
    Could you let me know about these???

    Thanks^^

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Oriya
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 2,121
    #2

    Exclamation Re: the

    Quote Originally Posted by jonah2 View Post
    "exams week"
    someone i know told me "it's exams week."

    But as far as i know, there should be 'the' or 'a' before noun if 'week' is a countable noun, especially.

    How should i understand this?

    And can i say " how is the life in Japan?"
    while i am confused in using the and a, i thougt that when i am expecting there would be something special in Japan life, i could use 'the' as a specific meaning.
    But it seems that everybody just say how's life? What is more confusing is when asking weahter people seem to say "how's the weather" with the.
    Could you let me know about these???

    Thanks^^
    An article (a, an & the)in general, combines with a noun to indicate the type of reference being made by the noun. The use of the signals that the reference is to a specific and unique instance of the concept (such as person, object, or idea). In your case:
    "it's exams week."
    There are many weeks, but the meaning here is the week when examination is held, so it is a unique one. Hence the use of ‘the’ is appropriate: “it's the exams week.”
    And can i say " how is the life in Japan?"
    Yes, when you are referring to life specific to a particular place/country, you can not use ‘a’, it should be ‘the’.
    "how's the weather". Means, a description of weather now is asked for. It is specific, so the use of definite article is correct.


    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 1,571
    #3

    Re: the

    The exam week will last from Jan. 10 till Jan. 17.

    An exam week is always hard.

    What's life in Japan like?

    How is your life in Japan?

    What's the weather like today?


    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409
    #4

    Re: the

    It is:

    Exam week will last from Jan. 10 till Jan. 17.

    Exam week is always hard.

    How is life in Japan?

    This may not be a case of a 'rule' governing 'omission of the article' but a case of 'non-use'. See this site for more examples of changes occurring in this regard. e.g. When I was at school, it used to be 'the Sudan' and 'the Lebanon' but now, the definite article is omitted.
    English Teaching Forum Online – Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs

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