I have a question about my English. Would you help me?
Topic: Simple case studies
July 17, 2019 / By Baily Question:
I am studying English as a second language. Here's a problem that I encountered while doing some exercises.
This one below asks you to choose THE or A. (article)
I'm going to THE supermarket. Do you need anything?
In this sentence, I know 'THE' is correct, but why can't I use 'A' instead? If you are alreday determined which supermarket you are going to, you have to use 'THE' to specify it. Am I correct?
What if you are not sure which supermarket you are going to? I thought you have to use 'A' in such a case....
I thought both 'THE' and 'A' were correct.
I'm confused. Why am I wrong?
Best Answers: I have a question about my English. Would you help me?
Adamina | 2 days ago
It's very simple, don't worry, eventually you'll get it right.
THE and A could both be used, but everything depends on the situation, in this case THE is the correct answer.
If you use: "I'm going to THE supermarket," it is understood that you are going to THE nearest supermarket, or THE one that you frequently go to, or THE one that has the items you are looking for.
If you say: "I'm going to A supermarket," it means that you're going to ANY supermarket, and if that is the connotation that you want, then you most likely say ANY instead of A.
👍 192 | 👎 2
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Read 'The Way To Wealth'. I hope this is of some help.
"A" implies that you are not going to a specific supermarket, that you really don't know or want to reveal the supermarket you are going to. That's why it's called an indefinite article. It's used before singular nouns that refer to any member of a group.
"The" implies that you are going to a certain supermarket, that you have a supermarket in mind that you are going to. It is a definite article and is used before singular and plural nouns that refer to a particular member of a group.
"A" and "B" are correct. They just have slightly different meanings. Most people that are about to go out to a store will use "the."
👍 80 | 👎 -4
Your sentence is correct. I'm not sure about the grammar, but contextually, saying 'I'm going to A supermarket' sounds odd to native speakers because it sounds as though you're trying to keep the supermarket's identity secret. If you weren't sure which supermarket you're going to, then further questioning would be needed unless you said the supermarket's name. Hope that helped a bit!
👍 79 | 👎 -10
Though your reasoning is right, in this case "the" is the correct choice. "The supermarket" doesn't really refer to any specific supermarket. Despite the definite article, it's a generalised reference. It's like "children shouldn't play in the street". This means any street, no specific one.
👍 78 | 👎 -16
It is not so much grammar, but common sense and common usage. By the time you get there it will be the market you chose.( a specific one) It isn't incorrect to say a if you don't know which.
You will pick out a lettuce, while there, because it is one of many.
When you get back, you'd say, "I went to the market to get a or the lettuce, the one we needed for the salad."
👍 77 | 👎 -22
Originally Answered: Question about english?
Both "Have you finished yet?" and "Haven't you finished yet?" have almost the same meaning. Although while they technically have the same meaning, they're used in different situations. For example, if you were impatient, waiting for someone to finish, you might say "Haven't you finished yet?" as in "Why are you taking so long?". Whereas "Have you finished yet" isn't so impatient.
Again, both "Did you finish your homework?" and "You finished your homework?" are equally valid. But "You finished your homework?" is much more casual and colloquial. You wouldn't say it in a formal conversation, for instance.
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This isn't correct. However, "Have you ever been to London?" IS correct. "Be" isn't acceptable in that context. However, "Have you ever" and "Did you ever" are both valid.