What Is An Article In A Sentence?
The process of writing isn’t necessarily easy, as writers have to learn and inculcate small nuances into their craft, as the art of writing doesn’t only comprise understanding linguistic components, but it also includes understanding different linguistic ploys and elements that are compulsory for a narrative to come together into a cohesive whole.
Hence, to gain their complete grasp over the process of writing, writers need to understand the following elements, as these features glue the disparate shards of information into a logical whole. Follow through to understand what precisely is an article, where should it be utilised and in which areas should they be avoided, as the incorrect usage of an article can weigh down a narrative.
An article is a sort of an adjective that is primarily used with or either gives information about a noun. There are three articles, namely ‘a’, ‘an’ and ‘the’; however, they need to be used appropriately for them to make a difference or for them to settle into the narrative. The usage of an article can shift the granularity and the underlying essence of a sentence, such as in the following:
- After the short day, the bed didn’t seem rather comfortable.
In this sentence, it is shown that it was one specific day that was short and that one particular bed that wasn’t comfortable; this, therefore, explicates the importance of one singular element or a particular day.
- After a short day, a bed didn’t seem rather comfortable.
In this sentence, through the usage of the article ‘a’ it is shown that the statement is a general one, as it is implied that after any given short day, any given bed could have seemed rather comfortable, as opposed to a given bed.
The word ‘the’ is a definite article, as it indicates a definite thing, as opposed to something general; this is represented through the following statement:
e.g. The cat was cranky, as it hadn’t slept in days’/ A cat was cranky, as it hadn’t slept in days’
In these sentences, the former one talks about a specific cat, whereas in the latter, the statement speaks about any given cat.
Moreover, in the English language, the writer can’t say ‘I spoke to person’ without using an article, such as ‘the’ or ‘an’. However, these articles can be substituted with a demonstrative or possessive adjective, such as ‘I spoke to that person’ or ‘I spoke to this person’.
The indefinite articles ‘a’ and ‘an’ are used before a noun when describing something general or when its identity unknown. These are following scenarios when the articles mentioned above ‘an’ and ‘a’ are utilised in prose.
- Use an article when indicating any non-specified member of a category
I think a goat is in the room
That man is a bad person
We are searching for an accommodation option
- Use the article ‘an’ or ‘a’ to indicate one in number (as opposed to more than one)
I own a dog and two ducks
I have an apartment in possession for two months.
- Use the article ‘an’ before a vowel sound and the article ‘a’ before a consonant sound.
A girl and an apple
An envelope and a table
- The plural form of the article ‘an’ and ‘a’ is ‘some’. Use the word ‘some’ to indicate an indefinite but limited amount (more than one at least)
An apple, some apples
A banana, some bananas
- Use the article ‘the’ when indicating something or someone ‘unique.’
The theory of gravity
The monthly budget of January
- Use no article when writing sentences with plural count nouns.
Snowfall is beautiful in winters. (Snowfall is generally beautiful to look at during winters)
The students were asking for advice. (The students were generally asking for advice)
I do not like coffee or tea. (I do not like coffee or tea in general)
- Use the word ‘some’ when depicting a limited amount of count nouns (a noun that can form a plural, e.g. book, books) or noncount nouns (nouns that cannot be counted, e.g. butter, cabbage, beef or chocolate)
e.g. My brother was seeking some advice from our parents
I would love some chicken soup right now
Some rain would be good for this drought-stricken region
There are some drops of rain on the road
- Use the article ‘the’ for geographical names, as they require the significance and exclusivity that is attached to their value.
The Sahara Desert
The United Kingdom
The Kingdom Of Saudi Arabia
The Mekong River
- Use the article ‘an’ before a countable noun that discusses a major group of things. Moreover, also make use of an article before mentioning a profession.
E.g. A carrot is rich in Vitamin A.
E.g. He wants to become a neurophysicist.
In a nutshell, students need to centre their focal point on understanding the different elements that go into putting together a coherent piece of writing, as placing articles in their appropriate place uplifts the narrative.