More about articles in English (a, an, the and Ø )
NOTE: This is the second lesson for articles. If you have not completed level A1, we recommend you first look at this lesson (an introduction to articles)
Using articles in English can be very difficult as there are a lot of rules to remember. There are three articles in English ‘a’, ‘an’, ‘the’ and sometimes no article Ø is needed.
1. The indefinite article – A or AN
Examples of use of indefinite articles: Do you have a pen? I need an umbrella.
2. The definite article – THE
Examples of use of definite articles: The boy lives at home. Here is the book I borrowed.
3. The zero article – this is used when no article is used, often shown as Ø in grammar books
Examples of zero articles: I like (Ø) dogs. (Ø) English exercises can be difficult.
Articles – rule #5
With uncountable nouns, we often use no article (Ø).
- I like wine (not the wine or a wine)
- I listen to good advice (not the good advice or a good advice)
NOTE: Some nouns can be countable and uncountable.
- Sleep is important
- I am tired. I need a good sleep.
Articles – rule #6
The is used with superlatives.
- The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world.
- Lake Baikal in Russia is the deepest lake in the world.
- Elephants are the biggest animals in Africa.
Articles – rule #7
No article (Ø) is used when talking generally about subjects / topics.
- Rugby is a great game.
- I don’t like science.
Click here to try the ‘More about articles in English’ exercises.