[Grammar] Americans, The American, The Americans.

Son Ho

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Good afternoon teacher!
I think the three following noun phrases are the same meaning which says that all Americans are living in the United States (or in the world). Could you please explain to me if there is any little difference between them?

1) Americans ( Plural Noun)
2) The American ( The + Adjective)
3) The Americans ( The + Plural Noun)

And I would like to add that I found 3 which prefers to GENERIC REFERENCE in " A COMPREHENSIVE GRAMMAR OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE" by Randolph Quirk and three other partners.
 
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You make a small mistake in identifying #2 as an adjective. The only way American is an adjective (and it is often used that way) is if a noun comes after, as in the American hockey team.

The use of America and American is somewhat complicated by the fact that America has come to mostly be understood as referring to The United Sates of America, but the word is still the name of three continents: North America (Canada and the USA), Central America (Mexico and several other countries I can't name offhand), and South America. Further confusing things is the fact that the several countries located on islands in the Caribbean Sea are also considered part of The Americas.

As a US citizen living abroad, I try to avoid saying, "I'm from America." I like to respect people from the many other countries of the Americas. They are "from America" as much as I am, though perhaps these days they wouldn't care to associate themselves with us...
 

Son Ho

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Firstly, I would like to thank you very much for giving me useful information which helps to broaden my knowledge. Secondly, I have some more questions in terms of grammar point articles. I thought the American which is considered an adjective in the noun phrase like the poor. But as you said that I was wrong. To make it easier, I would like to ask about some uncomplicated noun phrases:

1) The Japanese and Japanese are the same, aren't they? (all Japanese citizens)

2) If I would like to mention a specific group of Japanese tourists, could I say the Japanese?
 
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GoesStation

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The Americas consist of two continents, North and South America, and Central America, which is the southern region of North America.
 

Roman55

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North America (Canada and the USA), Central America (Mexico and several other countries I can't name offhand), and South America.

GoesStation is correct when he says that so called Central America is the southern part of the continent of North America, but quite apart from that definition, Mexico is in North America and not Central America.
 

emsr2d2

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The Americas consist of two continents, North and South America, and Central America, which is the southern region of North America.

That's interesting. I've always considered Central America to be the northern region of South America!
 

GoesStation

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That's interesting. I've always considered Central America to be the northern region of South America!

Except for Panama, which straddles it, the Central American countries are all north of the Isthmus of Panama. This narrow strip connects North and South America.
 

Son Ho

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Teachers ! Beside the point, please help me with this. If I would like to mention a specific group of Japanese tourists in front of me, could I say the Japanese?
 

Son Ho

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We are still waiting for you to use these words in complete sentences.
Please tell me what is wrong with my sentences? Maybe I don't get your point. A complete sentence must have a subject and a verb, isn't it? I will surely correct them as soon as I get your words.
 

Son Ho

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You haven't given us any yet.

If you want us to tell you whether you should use either 'Japanese' or 'the Japanese' in a sentence, or whether both are possible, then you need to give us a sentence containing these words.

Thank you a lot. Please check the three following sentences:
1) Do you see the Japanese over there?. They are very polite.
2) Japanese are very strong-willed.
3) The Japanese suffered from atomic bomb strikes in the Second World War.
 

Tarheel

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Thank you a lot. Please check the three following sentences:
1) Do you see those Japanese people over there? They are very polite.
2) The Japanese are very strong-willed.
3) The Japanese suffered from atomic bomb strikes in the Second World War.

That's how I would change your sentences. We'll see if the others agree or not.
 
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