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The Indefinite Article

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Hobgoblinpie

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'a/an: They are used before a singular noun that has a plural form. 'A' is used before a consonant sound and 'an' is used before a vowel sound.'

 

Despite the supposedly simple rule, determining the proper usage of 'a' and 'an', a lot of people, and more importantly many journalists, still fail to uphold the correct usage.

 

Examples that I have encountered recently are 'an spent smoke grenade' and 'an media', with many before then. The reason these two stick in my mind like flies to manure, is simply because 'spent' and 'media' do not have anything even resembling a 'vowel sound'.

 

The rule itself is of little difficulty to comprehend, unlike the offside rule in Football (or Soccer, to Americans), which makes it harder for me to accept the complete meltdown of the rule itself.

 

Words beginning in 'H' that originated in French are correctly paired with the indefinite article 'an' (e.g. an [h]otel). Yet words that have no such link are still incorrectly paired.

 

It is not a problem for me with casual chat, such as forum postings - rather when someone is getting paid to write, they should be able to write proficiently, and at least getting one of the simplest rules in the language correct.

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An hotel is an absurd way to spell it. It makes sense in French, because you don't pronounce the 'h', but not in English, because you do.

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An hotel is an absurd way to spell it. It makes sense in French, because you don't pronounce the 'h', but not in English, because you do.

 

You are correct, I was adapting it for the large American user base of Tip.It. I find it absurd that American's say ' 'erbs' rather than 'herbs' (e.g. Chris Redfield in Resident Evil 5 - 'Give me an 'erb').

 

Can't win them all unfortunately, but I would at least expect SOME consistency with writers who are being paid to write.

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Do you read the news articles on RuneScape anymore? I'm not sure there's been a major one for months that didn't have some obvious errors.

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Do you read the news articles on RuneScape anymore? I'm not sure there's been a major one for months that didn't have some obvious errors.

 

Really? I shall give them a look when I have done my exam. Thanks for that.

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Weird, I thought I'd definitely seen a few in the Very Barrows New Year post, but rereading it there don't appear to be any. It could be better written, but it works.

I've definitely seen some in the past though, because I distinctly remember that kind of mental facepalming I feel when a multimillion dollar company makes glaring errors.

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