Do you use the definite or the indefinite article?

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hardworker
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Do you use the definite or the indefinite article?

Post by hardworker » Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:47 am

I would like to make up a few sentences.

(1) On scoring a/the seventieth goal, you will win a special trophy.

(2) I will make a/the third toy car when I have time.

Someone told me that you have to use "the" in (1) and "a" in (2) without any explanation. I don't understand why it is so. Could someone please explain it? Thank you very much.

knowable
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Re: Do you use the definite or the indefinite article?

Post by knowable » Sun Jun 26, 2016 1:55 pm

In second sentence you are not talking about any specific toy.

For the first sentence however, if there will be any 70th goal scored, then they will have been up to 69 goals scored. And there will be only one 70th goal scored: meaning goals are only scored one at a time. So we do use the when we are clear there is only one of a something.

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