Article Usage and IETLS - Part 2

Definite Article: The

Rule

Examples

The is used with singular, specific nouns

Where is the television remote?

Please clean the bathroom.

The is used to refer to something already discussed.

I have a cat and a dog. The dog is named Spot, and the cat is named Fluffy.

The is used with things considered to be unique

The sun is hot.

The wind is picking up.

The is used with countable nouns that represent a category of something

The public is upset about rising transportation costs.

The customer is always right.

The is used with superlative adjectives

She is the best guitar player.

He is the fastest swimmer on the team.

The is used with ordinal numbers

The first man on the moon was Neil Armstrong.

I was born on the second of November.

The is used with oceans, seas, rivers, island chains, mountain chains, deserts, countries with plural names 

The Arctic Ocean is cold.

I took a hike in the Rocky Mountains.

It has not rained in the Atacama Desert in more than 12 months.

I would like to visit the Netherlands.

The is used with titles

She is excited to meet the Queen of England.

The is used for newspapers

I picked up the Daily Post on my way home from work.

The is used with proper names containing a noun

The Eiffel Tower is busy during the summer.

I went to the Chicago Art Museum.

The is used when referring to the physical environment

My family lived in the mountains.

We will holiday near the ocean.

The is used with instruments

My brother plays the trumpet.

The is used with currencies

The recent stock market crash has caused the British Pound to fall against the Euro.

The can be used to refer to parts of the body or articles of clothing

A stranger tapped me on the shoulder. When I didn’t respond, he grabbed me by the collar.

The is used with most forms of entertainment

(though not television)

I like to listen to the radio.

I like to watch television.

I will go to the cinema this weekend.

There is a new exhibit at the museum.

My sister is begging me to take her to the carnival.