Use of Article 'An' - Tutorial English

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In this lesson, we will learn how to use the article ‘an’ in your conversations.


Cris: “An” is an indefinite article. It is used to talk about countable nouns. ‘An’ is not used to talk about plurals or non-countable nouns. We use ‘an’ before vowels (a, e, i, o, u) and before vowel sounds.

Troy: Can I have an apple?

Chris: Here ‘apple’ is a noun beginning with a vowel sound.

Troy: Bruce Springsteen is an American musician.

Chris: An indefinite article is used because he is part of a group of American musicians.

Troy: My father in an architect.

Chris: Since ‘architect’ begins with a vowel sound, we use the article ‘an.’

Troy: I live in a United States.

Chris: This sentence is incorrect. We do not use indefinite articles with countries, states, or provinces, lakes, or mountains because they are unique.

Troy: I live in the United States.

Chris: This is the correct sentence.

Troy: Cassie is an interpreter.

Chris: In this example, Cassie belongs to a group of interpreters. We use ‘an’ because ‘interpreter’ begins with a vowel sound.

Troy: Sam is an honest person.

Chris: Here the adjective describing the noun begins with the consonant ‘h’. However, we use the article ‘an’ because the ‘h’ is silent, and we pronounce the vowel sound /ɒ/.

Conversation 1

Katy: What did you have for breakfast today?

Lisa: I just ate an apple.

Katy: Just an apple? Are you on a diet?

Lisa: No, I’m not. I just wasn’t very hungry.

Katy: All right. In that case, you might feel hungry at least an hour before the lunch break.

Conversation 2

Jerry: Hey. I’ve heard your dad is an architect. Is that right?

Tom: Yes, he is an architect. Why do you ask?

Jerry: I’m planning to study Architecture. My parents advised me to meet an architect for some information about how it is to be one.

Tom: Oh really? Well, it is an amazing profession. You must meet my dad to get a better idea.

Jerry: Can I meet him next Sunday?

Tom: I’m not sure. He has a very busy schedule.

Jerry: Sure. Just let me know whenever he is free and willing to talk.

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