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MORE: Articles

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Using Articles: A good basic explanation
Using Articles A, An, The: Another good description of when to use which article
The/A: Another quiz
English Grammar - Articles - How to use A, AN, THE: A nice Youtube video by JamesESL.
a/an - the - some

What is an article?

An article is a special kind of adjective. We use adjectives with nouns, so we use articles with nouns. 

We use the to talk about a specific thing. We use a or an to talk about a non-specific thing. Some is the plural of a or an.

Specific: Are you reading the book I gave you?
Non-specific: Are you reading a book?

Specific: When did the accident happen? The accident happened yesterday.
Non-specific: How were you hurt? I was hurt in an accident.

When to use a and when to use an

Use a in front of a word with a consonant:
a book, a cat, a dog, a front porch, a girl, a kite, a mother, a ride, a word

Use an in front of a word with a vowel or vowel-sound:
an eye, an idiom, an offer, an old man, an uncle, a yellow ribbon


The is the plural of the.
Some is the plural of a and an.

The chair, the chairs.
a chair, some chairs.
an elephant, some elephants.