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ZERO Article

"—"

Sometimes it is possible to have a noun phrase with NO article—the so-called "ZERO article".

I need a bowl of rice. ← indefinite article

I like the rice in this restaurant. ← definite article

I eat rice every day. ← ZERO article

The ZERO article usually occurs in the following cases:

ZERO Article with Plural and Uncountable Nouns

General meaning

  • cars, people
  • life, water

Abstract nouns

  • education, happiness, music

ZERO Article with Singular Countable Nouns

Names

People: Mary, Bill, Josef

Places: Jupiter, Russia, Bangkok, Heathrow Airport, Cambridge University, Waterloo Station

Streets: Oxford Street, Wall Street, Picadilly Circus

Languages: English, Russian

Academic subjects: History, Law, Physics

Days, months: Monday, November

Games and Sports

  • football, chess

Meals

  • breakfast, lunch, dinner

Noun + Number

  • platform 3, room 7, page 44

Routine Places

  • in bed, at home, to school, to work

Movement or Transport

  • on foot, by car, by bus, by air

Newspaper Headlines, Notices, User Guides

  • Plane Crashes On House, Keep Area Clean, Insert battery

Example Sentences

Here are some example sentences showing the ZERO article in context.

  • Cars can be dangerous.
  • We seldom see courage like that.
  • I could see clouds in the sky.
  • There was milk on the doorstep.
  • I gave it to Mary.
  • She arrived in Bangkok yesterday.
  • Do you speak French?
  • He is good at tennis.
  • People will travel to Mars soon.
  • He is in room 45.
  • Please turn to page 67.
  • She's in bed.
  • Are you at home?
  • They took her to hospital.
  • I'm leaving town tomorrow by car.
  • I go to school by bus.
  • We usually meet on Monday.
  • November is quite cold.
The ZERO Article is sometimes also called the ZERO Determiner.