In the previous High English quiz we learnt about determiners used with countable and uncountable (or quantifying) nouns. In this quiz we look at choosing the correct determiners to use with those quantifying nouns.
ALL, EVERY, EACH, TWO (or any other number), FEW, MANY and MOST are some of the common determiners we are all familiar with that are used for countable nouns. Similarly, ENOUGH, LITTLE, MORE, SOME and MUCH are used for uncountable nouns. Generally such determiners, also known as quantifiers, can be classified into three categories, like so:
The first category, comprising A, ALL, AN, ANOTHER, EVERY, BOTH, EACH, EITHER, FEW, MANY, SEVERAL, MOST, NEITHER, NO and ANY, can be used with countable nouns only. In this category we can add all the numbers. For instance, we can say ‘FOUR STUDENTS were selected for the school cricket team’ but we cannot say ‘My father gave me FOUR MONIES’. Here ‘student’ is a countable noun whereas ‘money’ is an uncountable noun.
The second category, comprising ENOUGH, LITTLE, MORE, SOME and MUCH, can be used with uncountable nouns only. For instance, in the example above we could say ‘My father gave me SOME MONEY’ or ‘He lost MUCH BLOOD when he hurt himself falling down from the cycle’. Here both ‘money' and 'blood’ are uncountable nouns.
The third category, comprising ALL, SOME, MOST, MORE, ENOUGH, NO and ANY, can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns. For instance, we can say ‘SOME TABLES were broken in the hailstorm’ and ‘Pass me SOME WATER please’ and here SOME is a determiner which can be used by both countable (table) and uncountable (water) nouns.
It takes some practise to use the correct determiners and the trick is to learn about the context of the sentence and identify the nouns and the appropriate determiners to use.
To sum up, determiners are used to express a close relationship, or a quantity, closeness or definiteness. Determiners are also used to demonstrate something or define someone, besides stating differences between nouns. It may be noted that determiners should not be confused with adjectives as there are several differences. For instance, determiners are almost always required in a sentence whereas adjectives are not. Determiners are not gradable whereas adjectives are.
Take the quiz that follows and learn about choosing the appropriate determiners to use with quantifying nouns.