English Grammar


Articles : General and specific meanings

When we use a plural noun or an uncountable noun with no article, it has a general meaning. When we put ‘the’ in front, it has a specific meaning.

Cars are a big problem in city centres.
The cars our salesforce use are all VWs.

I can’t set up complicated spreadsheets.
The spreadsheets for May and June are here.

People can be difficult sometimes.
The people un my office are all very friendly.

I prefer fish to meat.
The fish I had for lunch was superb.

Money makes the world go round.
The money we’ve invested is close to €1m.

How’s business?
The clothing business is very competitive.

Negotiating with suppliers is my responsibility.
The negotiating was much easier last time.

2 comments

  • Covemaeker said

    When we use a plural noun or an uncountable noun with no article, it has a general meaning. When we put ‘the’ in front, it has a specific meaning.

    Cars are a big problem in city centres.
    The cars our salesforce use are all VWs.

    I can’t set up complicated spreadsheets.
    The spreadsheets for May and June are here.

    People can be difficult sometimes.
    The people un my office are all very friendly.

    I prefer fish to meat.
    The fish I had for lunch was superb.

    Money makes the world go round.
    The money we’ve invested is close to €1m.

    How’s business?
    The clothing business is very competitive.

    Negotiating with suppliers is my responsibility.
    The negotiating was much easier last time.

     
    I didn't know that, so I can completely ommit the article a/the when I am not pointing out something specific
  • Or it Just with plural and uncountable nouns?

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