The indefinite article – a, an
1. The indefinite article – a
The indefinite article a is the same for all genders.
- a boy
- a girl
- a cat
The indefinite article has no plural form.
- a boy → boys
We use an if the following word starts with a spoken vowel.
|the following word starts with a spoken consonant||the following word starts with a spoken vowel|
|Mind the pronunciation of the following word.|
|The first sound we speak is [j], so we use a → a unit||The first sound we speak is [ʌ], so we use an → an uncle|
2. Use of the indefinite article a/an
2.1. before phrases of time and measurements (per week/weekly)
- We have English 4 times a week.
- I go on holiday twice a year.
- Our car can do 220 kilometres an hour.
- Tomatoes are $2 a kilo.
2.2. before phrases of jobs
- My father is a car mechanic.
2.3. with a noun complement
- He is a good boy.
2.4. before phrases of nationality
- Bruce Springsteen is an American.
- We need half a pound of sugar.
- This is quite a good story.