I have some questions about the English articles.?

I'm learning the English articles.

I think that the definite article “the” isn't used at which it has to be used in the following three sentences extracted from my books.

①“All 26 people on board the plane were killed."

Why isn't “all the 26 people”correct in this sentence?

②The trail of death touched all corners of Africa.

Why isn't “all the corners” correct in this sentence?

③For convenience of reference, there are summaries at the beginning of all chapters, and a full index at the end of the book.

This sentence is extracted from “Meaning and the English Verb: Edition 3”.

Why isn't “all the chapters” correct in this sentence?


My English is very poor,sorry.

the definite article “the” isn't used at which it has to be used → the definite article “the” which has to be used isn't used

2 Answers

  • Andeee
    Lv 5
    4 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Short answer: you don't need it because you have the word "all."

    All of these sentences are correct as they are written without the addition of the definite article. Adding "the" wouldn't be incorrect, but it is unnecessary and sounds a very awkward.

    The purpose of the definite article is to identify a specific example of whatever you're talking about. In all of your examples, there is no specific example being pointed to, because you're talking about all of them. "The" could replace "all" in some cases. "The 26 people on board the plane were killed," is correct and means the same thing as "all 26 people."

    It wouldn't work that way with your other two sentences, and the reasons it wouldn't might just create more confusion.

    For #3, you could write "all of the chapters." In #1, "all of the" would make it sound like there may have been more than 26 people. It doesn't work in #2 because "all corners" is sort of a figure of speech that just means "all over." To say "all of the corners" changes the meaning to indicate that you're specifically talking about the corners, and only the corners, which Africa doesn't literally have.

    In #1, If you were talking about specific ones out of the entire group, you would need to use "the." For example, if only some of the people were killed on the plane and some were not, you could use "the" to talk about the ones who were killed. "The 26 people who were killed on the plane were all sitting on the left side. Everyone seated on the right side survived."

    In #2, If you were talking about specific corners, you could say, "the death trail touched the northern corners of Africa."

    #3) "There are summaries at the beginning of the first three chapters"

  • 4 years ago

    1) it would only be correct if `the number of people had previously been mentioned.

    2) It would not be incorrect, but is unnecessary to convey the meaning.

    3) Again, it adds nothing of use. in conveying the meaning to the reader.

    *I am curious *** to whether you are studying English, Law, or both THE subject, and THE Profession?*


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