TOEIC Grammar - generalities

ScottsEnglishScottsEnglish Administrator Posts: 1,030 admin ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
edited October 2016 in Grammar

Using general forms

In English, when we are talking about general conditions, we use the plural form of the noun (if it is a countable noun). 

For example, "Do you like peaches?" and NOT "Do you like the peach?" or "Do you like a peach?"
In a store, you would ask the shopkeeper, "Do you have pencils? or "Do you have any pencils?" The same when talking about family. "Do you have any sisters?" is more correct than "Do you have a sister?" or "Do you have the sister?"

It is easy to forget this rule because many food items are uncountable, and may seem to be singular. "Do you like beef?" or "Do you like cheese?" These questions mean "beef in general" or "cheese in general".

The singular form can be used when talking about a specific item. If you need a pencil, you can ask, "Do you have a pencil?" because you are not talking about all pencils in general.

Try the following sentences:

1. Hi Paul, nice to meet you. Do you have any (brother) _______________ or (sister) ________________?
2. Jane really doesn't like any (milk) ______________________. She can't digest it.
3. I'm looking for (book) ___________________________ about the European Union.
4. I enjoyed the (cake) _______________________ we had for lunch.
5. Life has unanswered (question) __________________________ .

1. Hi Paul, nice to meet you. Do you have any brothers  or sisters?

2. Jane really doesn't like any milk. She can't digest it.

3. I'm looking for books about the European Union.

4. I enjoyed the cake we had for lunch.

5. Life has unanswered questions.
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