English as an Additional Language/Articles and Adjectives
Next up we will learn two very important things: articles and adjectives. Both articles and adjectives typically occur before the noun they modify, with articles occurring before adjectives.
Like other languages, English has a definite and an indefinite article. Unlike most Romance languages, English has no gender of nouns and so the articles don't change at all.
- Definite article (used when the noun or nouns are already known):
- Indefinite article (used when the noun or nouns is not already known):
- For singular nouns: a
- For singular nouns beginning in a vowel or a silent "h:" an Note that often "a" is used in front of vowels for some words; you will have to learn the exceptions individually.
- For plural nouns, the closest thing to an article would be some.
Remember that an adjective describes a noun. In English, adjectives are always placed before the noun, for example:
- The red apple.
- A soft sheep.
- An angry dragon.
- The silly boys.
- Some hard rocks.
Also, English adjectives do NOT agree with number or gender:
- The red apples, NOT The reds apples
- Some tall women, NOT Some talles women
The exception, however is the adjective "blond", which agrees with gender in writing:
- The blond boy, but;
- The blonde girl.
This is not strictly observed, however. Either "blond" or "blonde" is acceptable, and you are unlikely to be noticed using the feminine form for a male noun or vice versa.