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  1. RoseSpring's Avatar
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    #1

    A question about the use of The?

    __ I drove onto the water.

    __ I saw the milk spill .


    why did we use the in the previos sentences, although we are generally speaking?


    _ I used to gaze at the moon as if in a prayer.

    Is a here correctly used here, and what if we crossed it, would it be correct to?

    __ He has a full knowledge of the ancient sciences.

    Is the use of the correct here, as we are specifying these kind of sciences.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. LeighS's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: A question about the use of The?

    I drove onto the water
    You use 'the' here as it refers to something you did (specifically, not generally- where did you drive onto the water?) If the sentence was general it would read 'I drove onto water'

    I saw the milk spill
    This sentence is not referring to milk in general, but rather specifically THE milk you saw spill (the milk in your kitchen, on the table, etc...)

    I used to gaze at the moon as if in a prayer.
    This is correct, you are gazing at the moon, as if you are saying a prayer (one of many prayers that you know)

    I used to gaze at the moon as if in prayer.
    The word prayer here is not referring to a prayer, but rather emphasises the action of praying.

    He has a full knowledge of the ancient sciences.
    Is the use of the correct here, as we are specifying these kind of sciences? This depends on whether you're speaking about a branch of ancient sciences (the ancient sciences; for example metaphysics) or ancient sciences as a whole (ancient sciences in general).

    I hope this helps


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    #3

    Re: A question about the use of The?

    I used to gaze at the moon as if in a prayer.

    This is incorrect. It should be:
    I used to gaze at the moon as if in prayer.

    It is 'as if' in the act of praying, not offering/saying an actual prayer.
    He has a full knowledge of the ancient sciences.
    ...as opposed to the 'modern sciences'. Both highly specific.
    Last edited by David L.; 29-Mar-2009 at 15:06.

  3. LeighS's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: A question about the use of The?

    You're absolutely right David.
    Quote Originally Posted by David L. View Post
    I used to gaze at the moon as if in a prayer.

    This is incorrect. It should be:
    I used to gaze at the moon as if in prayer.

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    #5

    Re: A question about the use of The?

    Quote Originally Posted by LeighS View Post
    I drove onto the water
    You use 'the' here as it refers to something you did (specifically, not generally- where did you drive onto the water?
    Also, water here could mean a little more than simply the liquid- it could refer to a flood, ford, pool, etc- a certain body of water, as well as being in a specific place.

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