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The use of articles with the noun town.




The noun town when used with prepositions does not take an article:

(a)when we mean the nearest town (if we live in the country) or the town we live in.

You cannot go to town tomorrow. (Austen)

What can you have to do in town...? (Austen)

(b)when the noun town is opposed to the noun country.

He was not used to country life, having spent twenty years in town.

Otherwise the noun town is used with the definite or indefinite article.

I want to go to the town where I was born.

§ 30. The use of articles with the names of meals.

Names of meals are used without articles.

When did you have dinner?

Is dinner ready?

Mother is cooking dinner.

While they were at breakfast, the letters were brought in. (Austen)

I have finished breakfast, ring the bell. (Ch. Вrоntё)

The definite article is used when the nouns are modified by a par­ticularizing attribute or when the situation makes them definite.

The dinner we had today was very substantial.

The dinner was a success.

The indefinite article is used if the name of a meal is modified by a descriptive attribute.

Aftera hearty breakfast the four gentlemen sallied forth to walk to Gravesend. (Dickens)

The use of articles with names of languages.

Names of languages when they are not followed by the noun lan­guage are used without articles:

She knows English.

Note the use of the definite article in: What isthe English (the French etc.)for 'сосна'?

The definite article is used if the noun is modified by a particular­izing attribute:

The English of America differs fromthe English of England.

When the noun language is mentioned the definite article is used: the English language,the German language.

Use of Articles with Nouns Modified by Certain Adjectives, Pronouns and Numerals

Most.

(a) Most + adjective.

The definite article is used when most serves to form the superlative degree of an adjective.

This isthe most interesting chapter in the book.

The use of the indefinite article shows that a high degree of a quality is meant. Most has the same meaning as very, exceedingly.

Caroline found that the old maid had beena most devoted daugh­ter and sister. (Ch. Bronte)

Note. Occasionally the form of the superlative degree does not express comparison, but a high degree of a quality.

He listened withthe most profound attention.

He listened withthe deepest attention.

The same phenomenon is found in Russian: Он слушал с глубочайшим вниманием.

(в) Most + of + noun.

When definite people or things are meant the noun is used with the definite article and most is followed by the preposition of.



Most ofthe flowers in the garden were planted by the school­children.

Most ofthe gentlemen looked both angry and uncomfortable. (Voynich)

We say most, not most of the, when we do not mean definite people or things. The noun is used in a general sense.

Most flowers smell sweet.


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