An Online Catalogue of English Grammar Exercises

'The' for unique things. There is only one (could be one group!) and we all about know it.

Practice Exercise:

In the following exercise, choose the or nothing.
1. .... people are human beings not animals.
2. ..... world is a wonderful place which ...human race is destroying.
3.  There is only one....*Ritz which is why we call it........Ritz!
4.  I don't like when it's made from ...animal fat.
5. ..... head of......Roman Catholic Church is called....Pope.
6. .....leader of the political party in power in England is called.....Prime Minister.
7. ......islands are usually found in groups.
8. ......canal between the Atlantic and ....Pacific in Panama is called....Panama Canal and in Egypt is called ....Suez Canal.
9. .......Queen of Denmark is not as rich as .....Queen of England.
*footnote: Žonly oneŽ is not followed by 'the' e.g. There is only one head of the church.

Answers: 1. O.  2 the, the  3. O, the   4. O, O  5. the, the, the    6 the, the   7. O   8 the, the, the, the, the      9. the, the


Practice Exercise:

Put 'the' in front of certain words, e.g. the first, the next, the last, the best, and all superlatives.

Two English friends talking to each other over a cup of coffee in Piccadilly one day:

Woman: Guess who I saw yesterday?
Man: No idea.
Woman: (1)....... first French teacher I ever had.
Man: Oh, was she nice?
Woman: She was (2) (3) one wasn't nearly as nice.
Man: How many did you have?
Woman: Only two. (4) ....second one was.....last. I was (5).....worst student at languages so I stopped studying French. I was (6)......happiest student in the school when that happened.
Man: I was (7).......third person in my school to get a place in a foreign university.
Woman: I didn't go to University. My parents thought it was (8) ....stupidist thing I ever did but I don't agree. I went round the world instead - and learned French!
Man: Because (9) way to learn a language is to go to the country?
Woman: No. Because I married a Frenchman and he can't speak English. He was (10)......worst student in the school too. Now he's a successful entrepreneur.

Answer: 1 the  2 the     3 the    4. The   5 the    6 the     7 the    8 the       9 the     10 the

When you use the name of the person, the place or the planet, don't use 'the'. Say nothing. e.g. Martin, Montevideo, Mars.

See The A - Z of English Grammar & Usage for the rules.

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