• Parts of Speech and Sentence Structure

article meaning parts of speech

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  • the car down the street, the man next to you
  • a book, an apple, a bottle
  • the definite article the : You use it before a singular or a plural noun when you talk about one or more specific member(s) of a group (things, places or people) that is known to you: the tall man, the big house, the man next to me ;
  • the indefinite articles a/an : You use them before a singular noun when you talk about any general thing : a line, a house, a kitchen, a person, an apple, an airport, an idea, an umbrella .
  • You use the article a before nouns/adjectives or numbers that start with a consonant : a line, a kitchen, a person, a dog, a book, a tall man, a five-year-old boy, a job interview .
  • You use the article an before nouns that start with a vowel : an apple, an idea, an umbrella, an egg, an hour, an eight-year-old girl, an interview .
  • There is --- a an airport close to the city.  
  • Do you have --- a an armchair in your room?  
  • She has --- a an idea!  
  • They have --- an a female English teacher.  
  • He eats --- a an apple.  
  • There is --- an a school around the corner.  
  • She has --- an a new armchair.  
  • We will give him --- a an book for his birthday.  
  • Check  (  1  )
  • Check and show solutions
  • He works as pilot.  
  • I need new TV.  
  • He is best teacher at the school.  
  • They have eight-year-old girl.  
  • book she bought yesterday is not so good.  
  • She is nicest girl I know.  
  • She is nice girl.  
  • city that she likes the most is New York City.  
  • time  
  • example  
  • adjective  
  • week  
  • door  
  • elephant  
  • bike  
  • shop  
  • number  
  • umbrella  
  • opinion  
  • English book  
  • table  
  • eagle  
  • Michael says: "I have best friend. His name is Josh. He lives in small house outside the city. They have beautiful garden behind house. house is painted blue and there is fence around garden. I love going there. It's so nice and peaceful."  

Learn more ...

Writing Explained

What are Definite, Indefinite Articles? Definition, Examples of English Articles

Home » The Writer’s Dictionary » What are Definite, Indefinite Articles? Definition, Examples of English Articles

Definite and indefinite articles are parts of speech referring to the terms “the,” “a,” and “an.”

Definite articles definition: a determiner (the) that introduces specific nouns and noun phrases.

Indefinite articles definition: a determiner (a, an) that introduces nonspecific nouns and noun phrases.

What is an Article?

What is a definite article? A definite article is a part of speech that identifies a specific noun . “The” is the only definite article.

Placing “the” before a noun makes it specific. In order to say “the book,” the audience has to know to what book you are referring.

What is an indefinite article? An indefinite article is a part of speech that identifies a nonspecific noun. “A” and “an” are the only indefinite articles.

Placing “a” or “an” before a noun makes it nonspecific. To say “a book” refers to any book, not a single specific book.

the a vs the vs a

  • a cow (nonspecific—could be any cow)
  • the cow (specific—referring to a particular cow)
  • an animal (nonspecific—could be any animal)
  • the animal (specific—referring to a particular animal)

Two Types of Articles: Definite and Indefinite Articles

The definite article.

The definite article is “the.” “The” refers to a particular noun that is understood. The audience is aware of the object of reference and no further identification is needed.

What is a indefinite article

  • the chair, the city, the manager
  • the chairs, the cities, the managers
  • the boxes, the towns, the women
  • the food, the luggage, the electricity

The Indefinite Article

The indefinite article is “a” / “an” “A” and “an” refer to nonspecific nouns. The object of reference is not clear and further identification would be needed to know the exact object.

Indefinite Article Examples:

  • a chair, a city, a manager
  • plural—CANNOT BE USED
  • a box, a town, a woman
  • non-count—CANNOT BE USED

A vs. An: Remember A/An Depends on Sound

Which indefinite article to use (“a” or “an”), depends on the initial sound of the noun.

Articles a an the

  • A few days after Britain voted to leave the European Union, Monika Baginski was in a supermarket , chatting with a friend on the phone in her native Polish, when a man followed her down the aisle. – The New York Times

When to use An: If the initial sound of the noun when pronounced is a vowel sound, “an” is used.

  • A catchy soundtrack used to be enough, but the 21st century needs an app to publicize shark activity near New England’s coasts. – The Christian Science Monitor

Exercises with Articles: Indefinite vs. Definite Articles

Select the appropriate article (a, an, the) and fill-in the blank below.

  • Do you have ___ different table available?
  • He was searching for ____ right word to describe the situation.
  • This is ___ last time I will remind you to do your chores.
  • Braxten brought ___ apricot, ___ sandwich, and ____ cookie for lunch.
  • My mom demanded ____ explanation.

See answers below.

Articles and Proper Nouns

Is the an article

Use Articles With:

  • the Smith Family, the Jones Family
  • the United Kingdom, the United States, the Dominican Republic, the Philippines, the Canary Islands,
  • the Rocky Mountains, the Amazon, the Atlantic Ocean
  • the New York Times , the Red Cross, the Hyatt, the Capitol Building

Summary: What are Definite and Indefinite Articles in English?

Define definite article: The definition of a definite article is a determiner (the) used to identify a specific noun or noun phrase.

Define indefinite article: The definition of an indefinite article is a determiner (a, an) used to identify a nonspecific noun or noun phrase

In summary, articles can be definite or indefinite.

When to use the: Use a definite article (the) when the noun is a known entity.

When to use a, an: Use indefinite articles (a/an) when the noun is an unknown entity.

Articles in Grammar: From "A" to "The" With "An" and "Some" Between

  • An Introduction to Punctuation
  • Ph.D., Rhetoric and English, University of Georgia
  • M.A., Modern English and American Literature, University of Leicester
  • B.A., English, State University of New York

In English grammar , an article is a type of determiner that precedes and provides context to a noun . A determiner is a word or a group of words that specifies, identifies, or quantifies the  noun  or  noun phrase  that follows it: There are only two types of articles in English, definite or indefinite. The three main articles in English grammar are "the," "a," and "an." This grammatical concept may sound simple, but there are some tricky rules related to using it correctly.

Definite vs. Indefinite Articles

The only  definite article  is "the," which specifies a particular individual or thing in a particular  context . For example, in the title of a famous Sherlock Holmes story "The Hound of the Baskervilles," the first word of the sentence is a definite article because it refers to a specific case that the illustrious fictional detective tried to (and, of course, did) solve.

By contrast,  Purdue Owl  notes the indefinite articles—"a" and "an"—signal that the noun modified is indefinite, referring to  any  member of a group, or something that cannot be identified specifically by the writer or speaker. An example of a sentence containing both the "a" and "an" indefinite articles was published in E.B. White's classic children's tale "Charlotte's Web."

"Mr. Arable fixed  a  small yard specially for Wilbur under  an  apple tree, and gave him  a  large wooden box full of straw, with ​ a  doorway cut in it so he could walk in and out as he pleased."

This example uses both "a," which is always used before a  consonant sound , and "an," which is always used before a  vowel sound .

Using "A" and "An"

The key to knowing when to use "a" or "an" depends on the sound at the beginning of the noun (or adjective) that is being modified, not whether the noun or adjective actually begins with a vowel or consonant, notes  study.com :

"If the noun (or adjective) that comes after the article begins with a vowel sound, the appropriate indefinite article to use is 'an.' A vowel sound is a sound that is created by any vowel in the English language: 'a,' 'e,' 'i,' 'o,' 'u,' and sometimes 'y' if it makes an 'e' or 'i' sound."

By contrast, if the noun or adjective that comes after the article begins with a consonant that actually sounds like a consonant, use "a." "The Complete English Grammar Rules" presents some examples of when to use "a" or "an," depending on the sound of the first letter of the noun the article is modifying.

  • "What an u nusual discovery." - This is correct because "unusual" starts with a "u" that makes an "uh" sound.
  • "What a u nique discovery." - This is correct because the adjective after the article begins with a "u" that sounds like the consonant sound "yu."
  • I bought " a h orse." - You use the "a" here because "horse" starts with an "h" that sounds like the consonant "h."
  • " A h istorical event is worth recording." - Many folks think it should be "an" historic," but the article "a" is correct because the "h" is pronounced and sounds like the consonant "h."
  • " An h our" has passed. - In this case, you use "an" because the "h" in hour is silent, and the noun actually begins with the vowel sound "ow."

Note that in the first two sentences above, the article actually precedes the adjectives, "unusual" and "unique," but the articles actually modify the noun, "discovery" in both sentences. Sometimes the article directly precedes an adjective that modifies the noun. When this occurs, look at the first letter of the adjective when determining whether to use "a" or "an" and then use the same rules as those discussed above to determine which article to use.

Before Countable and Uncountable Nouns

When dealing with articles, nouns can either be:

  • Uncountable - You cannot count a specific number.
  • Countable - The noun does indicate a specific number.

When a noun is uncountable, it is preceded by an indefinite article—"a" or "an."  Butte College  gives this example to illustrate both:

  • I ate  an  apple yesterday.  The  apple was juicy and delicious.

In the first sentence, "apple" is uncountable because you're not referring to a specific apple; whereas, in the second sentence, "apple" is a countable noun because you are referring to one specific apple.

Another example would be:

  • Would you like tea? or "Would you like some tea."
  • "I would like the tea."

In the first instance, "tea" is uncountable because you're not referring to a specific tea, but instead, just to "some" tea (an undefinable number or amount). In the second sentence, by contrast, the speaker is referring to a specific cup or bottle of tea.

When to Omit Articles

As the first sentence in the previous example shows, you can sometimes omit the article particularly when the number or quantity is not known. Sometimes you would use the article in American English but not British English. For example:

  • "I have to go to the hospital." (American English)
  • "I have to go to hospital." (British English)

Conversely, sometimes you omit the article in American English but not in British English, as in:

  • "I played rugby." (American English)
  • "I play the rugby. (British English)

In these cases, the use, or omission, of the definite article depends on the type of English being spoken.

Pronouns, Demonstratives, and Possessives

You can also replace articles with  pronouns ,  demonstratives , and  possessives . They all work in the same way as a demonstrative article—naming a specific thing:

  • In English grammar, a pronoun is a word that takes the place of a noun, noun phrase, or noun clause. So, instead of the sentence: "Give the book to me," you would replace the definite article, "the," as well as the noun it modifies, "book," with the pronoun, "it," to yield the sentence: "Give it to me."
  • A demonstrative is a determiner or a pronoun that points to a particular noun or to the noun it replaces. So, instead of saying: "The movie is boring," you would replace the definite article, "the," with the demonstrative "this" or "that" to yield: "This movie is boring" or "That movie is boring."
  • A possessive pronoun is a pronoun that can take the place of a noun phrase to show ownership. Instead of saying: "The tale is long and sad!" you would replace the definite article, "the," to yield a sentence, such as: "Mine is a long and sad tale!" In the first sentence, the definite article, "the," modifies the noun, "tale." In the second sentence, the possessive pronoun, "mine," also modifies the noun, "tale."

High-Ranking Words

According to Ben Yagoda's book "When You Catch an Adjective, Kill It: The Parts of Speech, for Better and/or Worse," the word "the" is the most commonly-used word in the English language. It occurs "nearly 62,000 times in every million words written or uttered—or about once every 16 words." Meanwhile, "a" ranks as the fifth most commonly used word—and "an" ranks 34th.

So take the time to learn these important words—as well as their replacements, such as pronouns, demonstratives, and possessives—correctly to boost your command of English grammar, and in the process, enlighten your friends, impress your teachers, and gain the admiration of your associates.

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  • What Are Common Nouns?
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  • The 9 Parts of Speech: Definitions and Examples
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BASIC ESL

  • Parts of Speech
  • Language Use

Parts of Speech:

  • Parts of Speech Summary
  • Prepositions
  • Conjunctions
  • Interjections
  • Adjectives: Possessive
  • Adjectives: Comparative
  • Adjectives: Superlative
  • Demonstratives
  • Pronouns: Indefinite
  • Pronouns: Subject
  • Grammar – Object Pronouns
  • Pronouns: Possessive
  • Pronouns: Reflexive
  • Contractions

ELL Guide to Grammatical Articles

What are articles?

When are the articles a , an and the used?

What are good example of the articles a , an , and the in sentences?

Articles are words placed before a noun in a sentence .  They are used to introduce the noun.  The three English articles are a , an and the .

No Article – Singular Noun (Incorrect)

  • Read book .
  • I have apple .
  • Dave sells watch .

No Article – Plural Noun (Correct)

  • I read books .
  • I like apples .
  • Dave sells watches.

Articles A & An – Singular Noun (Correct)

  • Read a book .
  • I have an apple .
  • Dave sold a watch .

The (Correct)

  •  Read the book .
  •  I have the green apple .
  •  Dave wants the gold watch .

When are the articles a, an and the used?

The articles a and an are indefinite articles.  Indefinite articles are used with general nouns.  General nouns do not refer to a specific person, place or thing.

Use  a before words that begin with a consonant sound.

Use an before words that begin with a vowel sound.

Do not use a and an with plural nouns.

Nouns (Consonant Sound Beginning)

Nouns (Vowel Sound Beginning)

  • an  o range
  • an x -ray ( sounds like ‘ex’)
  • an ho ur (sounds like ‘our’)

The article the is a definite article.  Definite articles are used with specific nouns.  Specific nouns refer to specific persons, places, and things.

Non Specific Singular Nouns (with Indefinite articles)

Non Specific Plural Nouns (No articles needed)

Specific Nouns with Definite articles

  • the  boy at the front door
  • the  orange from the basket
  • the  shirt from the concert

What are good examples of the articles a,   an and  the in sentences?

General Nouns

  • My sister baked a p ie.
  •  I fed an e lephant yesterday.
  • Rudy asked for a p each.
  • Erica asked for an a pple.

Specific Nouns

  • My sister baked the pie on the counter.
  •  I fed the biggest elephant at the zoo.
  •  The children like the green grapes.
  • I didn’t like the fruit that I was given.

Basic ESL Workbooks

article meaning parts of speech

Related Lessons

article meaning parts of speech

  • Present Simple Tense
  • Present Perfect Tense
  • Past Simple Tense

article meaning parts of speech

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  • English Grammar
  • Parts of Speech

Parts of Speech - Definition, 8 Types and Examples

In the English language , every word is called a part of speech. The role a word plays in a sentence denotes what part of speech it belongs to. Explore the definition of parts of speech, the different parts of speech and examples in this article.

Table of Contents

Parts of speech definition, different parts of speech with examples.

  • Sentences Examples for the 8 Parts of Speech

A Small Exercise to Check Your Understanding of Parts of Speech

Frequently asked questions on parts of speech, what is a part of speech.

Parts of speech are among the first grammar topics we learn when we are in school or when we start our English language learning process. Parts of speech can be defined as words that perform different roles in a sentence. Some parts of speech can perform the functions of other parts of speech too.

  • The Oxford Learner’s Dictionary defines parts of speech as “one of the classes into which words are divided according to their grammar, such as noun, verb, adjective, etc.”
  • The Cambridge Dictionary also gives a similar definition – “One of the grammatical groups into which words are divided, such as noun, verb, and adjective”.

Parts of speech include nouns, pronouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives, prepositions, conjunctions and interjections.

8 Parts of Speech Definitions and Examples:

1. Nouns are words that are used to name people, places, animals, ideas and things. Nouns can be classified into two main categories: Common nouns and Proper nouns . Common nouns are generic like ball, car, stick, etc., and proper nouns are more specific like Charles, The White House, The Sun, etc.

Examples of nouns used in sentences:

  • She bought a pair of shoes . (thing)
  • I have a pet. (animal)
  • Is this your book ? (object)
  • Many people have a fear of darkness . (ideas/abstract nouns)
  • He is my brother . (person)
  • This is my school . (place)

Also, explore Singular Nouns and Plural Nouns .

2. Pronouns are words that are used to substitute a noun in a sentence. There are different types of pronouns. Some of them are reflexive pronouns, possessive pronouns , relative pronouns and indefinite pronouns . I, he, she, it, them, his, yours, anyone, nobody, who, etc., are some of the pronouns.

Examples of pronouns used in sentences:

  • I reached home at six in the evening. (1st person singular pronoun)
  • Did someone see a red bag on the counter? (Indefinite pronoun)
  • Is this the boy who won the first prize? (Relative pronoun)
  • That is my mom. (Possessive pronoun)
  • I hurt myself yesterday when we were playing cricket. (Reflexive pronoun)

3. Verbs are words that denote an action that is being performed by the noun or the subject in a sentence. They are also called action words. Some examples of verbs are read, sit, run, pick, garnish, come, pitch, etc.

Examples of verbs used in sentences:

  • She plays cricket every day.
  • Darshana and Arul are going to the movies.
  • My friends visited me last week.
  • Did you have your breakfast?
  • My name is Meenakshi Kishore.

4. Adverbs are words that are used to provide more information about verbs, adjectives and other adverbs used in a sentence. There are five main types of adverbs namely, adverbs of manner , adverbs of degree , adverbs of frequency , adverbs of time and adverbs of place . Some examples of adverbs are today, quickly, randomly, early, 10 a.m. etc.

Examples of adverbs used in sentences:

  • Did you come here to buy an umbrella? (Adverb of place)
  • I did not go to school yesterday as I was sick. (Adverb of time)
  • Savio reads the newspaper everyday . (Adverb of frequency)
  • Can you please come quickly ? (Adverb of manner)
  • Tony was so sleepy that he could hardly keep his eyes open during the meeting. (Adverb of degree)

5. Adjectives are words that are used to describe or provide more information about the noun or the subject in a sentence. Some examples of adjectives include good, ugly, quick, beautiful, late, etc.

Examples of adjectives used in sentences:

  • The place we visited yesterday was serene .
  • Did you see how big that dog was?
  • The weather is pleasant today.
  • The red dress you wore on your birthday was lovely.
  • My brother had only one chapati for breakfast.

6. Prepositions are words that are used to link one part of the sentence to another. Prepositions show the position of the object or subject in a sentence. Some examples of prepositions are in, out, besides, in front of, below, opposite, etc.

Examples of prepositions used in sentences:

  • The teacher asked the students to draw lines on the paper so that they could write in straight lines.
  • The child hid his birthday presents under his bed.
  • Mom asked me to go to the store near my school.
  • The thieves jumped over the wall and escaped before we could reach home.

7. Conjunctions are a part of speech that is used to connect two different parts of a sentence, phrases and clauses . Some examples of conjunctions are and, or, for, yet, although, because, not only, etc.

Examples of conjunctions used in sentences:

  • Meera and Jasmine had come to my birthday party.
  • Jane did not go to work as she was sick.
  • Unless you work hard, you cannot score good marks.
  • I have not finished my project,  yet I went out with my friends.

8. Interjections are words that are used to convey strong emotions or feelings. Some examples of interjections are oh, wow, alas, yippee, etc. It is always followed by an exclamation mark.

Examples of interjections used in sentences:

  • Wow ! What a wonderful work of art.
  • Alas ! That is really sad.
  • Yippee ! We won the match.

Sentence Examples for the 8 Parts of Speech

  • Noun – Tom lives in New York .
  • Pronoun – Did she find the book she was looking for?
  • Verb – I reached home.
  • Adverb – The tea is too hot.
  • Adjective – The movie was amazing .
  • Preposition – The candle was kept under the table.
  • Conjunction – I was at home all day, but I am feeling very tired.
  • Interjection – Oh ! I forgot to turn off the stove.

Let us find out if you have understood the different parts of speech and their functions. Try identifying which part of speech the highlighted words belong to.

  • My brother came home  late .
  • I am a good girl.
  • This is the book I  was looking for.
  • Whoa ! This is amazing .
  • The climate  in  Kodaikanal is very pleasant.
  • Can you please pick up Dan and me on  your way home?

Now, let us see if you got it right. Check your answers.

  • My – Pronoun, Home – Noun, Late – Adverb
  • Am – Verb, Good – Adjective
  • I – Pronoun, Was looking – Verb
  • Whoa – Interjection, Amazing – Adjective
  • Climate – Noun, In – Preposition, Kodaikanal – Noun, Very – Adverb
  • And – Conjunction, On – Preposition, Your – Pronoun

What are parts of speech?

The term ‘parts of speech’ refers to words that perform different functions in a sentence  in order to give the sentence a proper meaning and structure.

How many parts of speech are there?

There are 8 parts of speech in total.

What are the 8 parts of speech?

Nouns, pronouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives, prepositions, conjunctions and interjections are the 8 parts of speech.

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US House passes controversial bill that expands definition of anti-Semitism

Rights groups warn that the definition could further chill freedom of speech as protests continue on college campuses.

Students and pro-Palestinian supporters occupy a plaza at the City College of New York campus

The United States House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed a bill that would expand the federal definition of anti-Semitism, despite opposition from civil liberties groups.

The bill passed the House on Wednesday by a margin of 320 to 91, and it is largely seen as a reaction to the ongoing antiwar protests unfolding on US university campuses. It now goes to the Senate for consideration.

Keep reading

The take: university protests spread across the us, at least 200 arrested at may day clashes in turkey, university gaza protests rage on with columbia arrests and violence at ucla.

If the bill were to become law, it would codify a definition of anti-Semitism created by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) in Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

That is a federal anti-discrimination law that bars discrimination based on shared ancestry, ethnic characteristics or national origin. Adding IHRA’s definition to the law would allow the federal Department of Education to restrict funding and other resources to campuses perceived as tolerating anti-Semitism.

But critics warn IHRA’s definition could be used to stifle campus protests against Israel’s war in Gaza, which has claimed the lives of 34,568 Palestinians so far.

What is the definition?

IHRA’s working definition of anti-Semitism is “a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities”.

According to the IHRA, that definition also encompasses the “targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity”.

The group also includes certain examples in its definition to illustrate anti-Semitism. Saying, for instance, that “the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor” would be deemed anti-Semitic under its terms. The definition also bars any comparison between “contemporary Israeli policy” and “that of the Nazis”.

However, IHRA does specify that “criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be regarded as anti-Semitic”.

Bipartisan criticism

Rights groups, however, have raised concerns the definition nevertheless conflates criticism of the state of Israel and Zionism with anti-Semitism.

In a letter sent to lawmakers on Friday, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) urged House members to vote against the legislation, saying federal law already prohibits anti-Semitic discrimination and harassment.

The bill is “therefore not needed to protect against anti-Semitic discrimination”, the letter said.

“Instead, it would likely chill free speech of students on college campuses by incorrectly equating criticism of the Israeli government with anti-Semitism.”

Those fears were echoed within the House of Representatives itself. During a hearing on Tuesday, Representative Jerry Nadler, a Democrat, said the scope of the definition was too broad.

“By encompassing purely political speech about Israel into Title VI’s ambit, the bill sweeps too broadly,” he said.

Representative Thomas Massie, a Republican, also criticised the bill in a post on the social media platform X, noting that it only referred to the IHRA definition, without providing the exact language or stating clearly which parts would be enshrined into law.

“To find the legally adopted definition of anti-Semitism, one must go to [the IHRA website],” he wrote.

“Not only is the definition listed there, but one also finds specific examples of anti-Semitic speech. Are those examples made part of the law as well?”

Concerns on campus

The IHRA adopted its current definition of anti-Semitism in 2016, and its framing has been embraced by the US State Department under President Joe Biden and his two predecessors.

The vote on Wednesday comes as renewed protests have swept across college campuses in opposition to Israel’s war in Gaza. April has seen the spread of encampments on university lawns, as students call for university leaders to divest from Israel and for government officials to call for a ceasefire.

The Biden administration and other top Washington officials have pledged steadfast support for Israel, despite mounting humanitarian concerns over its military campaign.

US lawmakers also have upped the pressure on university administrators to quash the protests, which they have portrayed as inherently anti-Semitic.

Protest leaders across the country, however, have rejected that characterisation. Instead, they accuse administrators and local officials of conflating support for Palestinians with anti-Semitism.

They also have said their rights are being trampled by administrators who seek to appease lawmakers, prompting at times violent police crackdowns on the encampments.

On Tuesday, House Speaker Mike Johnson announced that several House committees would be tasked with a probe into alleged campus anti-Semitism. But critics fear the investigation could ultimately threaten to withhold federal research grants and other government support from the universities where the protests are occurring.

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Definite and Indefinite Articles | When to Use 'The', 'A' or 'An'

Published on 22 August 2022 by Sarah Vinz . Revised on 10 October 2022.

English has two types of articles to precede nouns : definite (the) and indefinite (a/an). You can improve the articles that appear in your dissertation by:

  • not using unnecessary articles with plural nouns,
  • not using ‘a’ or ‘an’ with uncountable nouns ,
  • using articles with singular countable nouns,
  • correctly choosing ‘a’ or ‘an’ in front of an acronym,
  • correctly deciding if an acronym for an entity needs ‘the’,
  • correctly identifying if a country name needs ‘the’.

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Table of contents

Avoid using unnecessary articles with plural nouns, don’t use ‘a’ or ‘an’ with uncountable nouns, use an article (or other determiner) with a singular countable noun, correctly choose ‘a’ or ‘an’ in front of an acronym, correctly decide if an acronym for an entity needs ‘the’, correctly identify if a country name needs ‘the’.

If you are using a plural noun (such as students, criteria, or theses), you usually don’t need to use ‘the’.

The exception is if you want to distinguish that you are talking about a particular group of people or things.

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Correct my document today

As the term implies, an uncountable (or mass) noun is something that normally cannot be counted (such as air, anger, information, knowledge, research, rice, and training).

Uncountable nouns cannot be accompanied by ‘a’ or ‘an’, as it’s impossible to have one of these things. If you really want to talk about one of something, the easiest option is to replace the uncountable noun with one that is countable. Another option is to add a countable noun after the uncountable noun.

Singular countable nouns (such as formula, participant, and professor) generally cannot stand on their own. If you are not using a possessive (e.g., my, your, her) or a demonstrative (e.g., this, that), you should use an article.

Most writers know that words starting with a consonant sound need ‘a’ (e.g., a study, a participant, a European), while words starting with a vowel sound need ‘an’ (e.g., an observation, an interview, an Ethiopian).

The same is true with acronyms (or initialisms), which are formed using the first letter of a series of words (such as SWOT for s trengths, w eaknesses, o pportunities, and t hreats). When deciding whether ‘a’ or ‘an’ is appropriate, focus on how the acronym would be pronounced. For instance, at first glance it might seem like ‘a HR manager’ is right; however, given the way it is read, ‘an HR manager’ is the correct choice.

After it creates an R&D department, the agency plans to apply for an FAO grant.

Acronyms that relate to organisations and countries have their own special guidelines when it comes to ‘the’.

The general test is whether an acronym would be read letter by letter (as in ADB) or pronounced as a word (as in NATO). Acronyms that are read letter by letter usually need ‘the’:

In contrast, acronyms that are read as words normally do not need ‘the’:

Most country names do not need an article. For instance, we say ‘The researcher traveled to Zimbabwe’ or ‘The study was conducted in Thailand’. However, ‘the’ is needed in the following circumstances:

Note that when it comes before a country name, ‘the’ does not need to be capitalised.

Sources for this article

We strongly encourage students to use sources in their work. You can cite our article (APA Style) or take a deep dive into the articles below.

Vinz, S. (2022, October 10). Definite and Indefinite Articles | When to Use 'The', 'A' or 'An'. Scribbr. Retrieved 6 May 2024, from https://www.scribbr.co.uk/the-parts-of-speech/article/
Aarts, B. (2011).  Oxford modern English grammar . Oxford University Press.
Butterfield, J. (Ed.). (2015).  Fowler’s dictionary of modern English usage  (4th ed.). Oxford University Press.
Garner, B. A. (2016).  Garner’s modern English usage (4th ed.). Oxford University Press.

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Sarah Vinz

Sarah's academic background includes a Master of Arts in English, a Master of International Affairs degree, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. She loves the challenge of finding the perfect formulation or wording and derives much satisfaction from helping students take their academic writing up a notch.

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Campus protests over the Gaza war

House passes bill aimed to combat antisemitism amid college unrest.

Barbara Sprunt

article meaning parts of speech

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson visited Columbia University on April 24 to meet with Jewish students and make remarks about concerns that the ongoing demonstrations have become antisemitic. Alex Kent/Getty Images hide caption

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson visited Columbia University on April 24 to meet with Jewish students and make remarks about concerns that the ongoing demonstrations have become antisemitic.

The House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday aimed at addressing reports of rising antisemitism on college campuses, where activists angered by Israel's war against Hamas have been protesting for months and more recently set up encampments on campus grounds .

The Antisemitism Awareness Act would see the adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's definition of antisemitism for the enforcement of federal anti-discrimination laws regarding education programs.

The bill passed with a 320-91 vote. Seventy Democrats and 21 Republicans voted against the measure.

The international group defines antisemitism as "a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews" and gives examples of the definition's application, which includes "accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real or imagine wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group" and making " dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective."

Rep. Mike Lawler, R-N.Y., introduced the legislation.

"Right now, without a clear definition of antisemitism, the Department of Education and college administrators are having trouble discerning whether conduct is antisemitic or not, whether the activity we're seeing crosses the line into antisemitic harassment," he said on the House floor before passage.

The bill goes further than an executive order former President Donald Trump signed in 2019 . Opponents argue the measure could restrict free speech.

"This definition adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance includes 'contemporary examples of antisemitism'," said Rep. Jerry Nadler in a speech on the House floor ahead of the vote. "The problem is that these examples may include protected speech in some context, particularly with respect to criticism of the state of Israel."

Fellow New York Democrat Rep. Ritchie Torres , one of the 15 Democratic cosponsors of the bill, told NPR he finds that argument unconvincing.

"There's a false narrative that the definition censors criticism of the Israeli government. I consider it complete nonsense," Torres said in an interview with NPR.

"If you can figure out how to critique the policies and practices of the Israeli government without calling for the destruction of Israel itself, then no reasonable person would ever accuse you of antisemitism," he added.

Issue should 'transcend partisan politics'

While members of both parties have criticized reports of antisemitism at the protests, Republicans have made the issue a central political focus.

House Speaker Mike Johnson made a rare visit last week to Columbia University, where demonstrators were demanding the school divest from companies that operate in Israel. Johnson and a handful of GOP lawmakers met with a group of Jewish students.

"They are really concerned that their voices are not being heard when they may complain about being assaulted, being spit on, being told that all Jews should die — and they are not getting any response from the individuals who are literally being paid to protect them," Rep. Anthony D'Esposito, R-N.Y., told NPR of the meeting.

On Tuesday, Johnson held a press conference focused on antisemitism with a group of House Republicans at the U.S. Capitol.

"Antisemitism is a virus and it will spread if it's not stamped out," Johnson said. "We have to act, and House Republicans will speak to this fateful moment with moral clarity."

Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., who chairs the House progressive caucus, says Republicans are playing politics.

"Many of these Republicans didn't say a word when Trump and others in Charlottesville and other places were saying truly antisemitic things. But all of a sudden now they want to bring forward bills that divide Democrats and weaponize this," she said.

Torres said he wished Johnson had done a bipartisan event with House Democrats to "present a united front."

"You know, it's impossible to take the politics out of politics, but the fight against all forms of hate, including antisemitism, should transcend partisan politics," he said.

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Student protestors chant near an entrance to Columbia University on April 30. Columbia University has restricted access to the school's campus to students residing in residential buildings on campus and employees who provide essential services to campus buildings after protestors took over Hamilton Hall overnight. Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images hide caption

Student protestors chant near an entrance to Columbia University on April 30. Columbia University has restricted access to the school's campus to students residing in residential buildings on campus and employees who provide essential services to campus buildings after protestors took over Hamilton Hall overnight.

Jewish students speak about feeling harassed

Hear from students who met with speaker johnson.

There was increased urgency to move legislation to the floor after lawmakers started hearing stories of Jewish students feeling unwelcome on campuses.

Eliana Goldin, a junior at Columbia and the Jewish Theological Seminary, said the escalation of protests on and around her campus have made her feel unsafe.

"I know many, many people who have been harassed because they wear a Jewish star necklace," Goldin told NPR. Goldin was one student who received a message from Rabbi Elie Buechler of Columbia a week ago.

"The events of the last few days...have made it clear that Columbia University's Public Safety and the NYPD cannot guarantee Jewish students' safety in the face of extreme antisemitism and anarchy," the message read. "It deeply pains me to say that I would strongly recommend you return home as soon as possible and remain home until the reality in and around campus has dramatically improved."

Demonstrators say their protest is peaceful and that some of the antisemitic events that have garnered national attention have come from people outside of the university.

Goldin said she was part of an interaction that got a lot of online attention of someone yelling at her and others to "go back to Poland." She said she was disappointed in the reaction from the broader Columbia community, even though the person was likely not a student.

"I do think if someone were to say, 'go back to Africa' to a Black student, it would one, be abhorrent," Goldin said. "And correctly, the entire Columbia student body would feel outraged at that, and we would all be able to rally around it. But of course, when someone says 'go back to Poland' to a Jew, we don't feel the same outrage and the same unity against that."

Torres said lawmakers should listen to students like Goldin.

"If there are Black students, who claim to experience racism, we rightly respect their experiences. The same would be true of Latino students, the same would be true of Asian students," he said. "If there are Jewish students who are telling us that they do not feel safe, why are we questioning the validity of their experiences? Why are we not affording them the sensitivity that we would have for every other group?"

Columbia University did not respond to NPR about questions about their handling of the protests.

article meaning parts of speech

A demonstrator breaks the windows of the front door of the building in order to secure a chain around it to prevent authorities from entering as demonstrators from the pro-Palestine encampment barricade themselves inside Hamilton Hall, an academic building at Columbia University, on April 30. Alex Kent/Getty Images hide caption

A demonstrator breaks the windows of the front door of the building in order to secure a chain around it to prevent authorities from entering as demonstrators from the pro-Palestine encampment barricade themselves inside Hamilton Hall, an academic building at Columbia University, on April 30.

'It just really kind of erodes the soul'

Xavier Westergaard, a Ph.D. student at Columbia, attended the meeting between the House GOP delegation and Jewish students.

"The mood in the room was relief that someone so high up in the government made this a priority," he said, referring to Johnson.

"Jewish students, including myself, have been the victims of physical violence and intimidation. This goes from shoving, spitting, being told to go back to Europe," he said. "It just really kind of erodes the soul if you hear it too many times."

He added: "And this is not just happening outside the gates, on the sidewalk where anyone from anywhere can come and demonstrate. We do have the First Amendment in this country. This was actually on campus. The university has responsibilities to protect their students from harassment on the basis of religion or creed or national origin."

A consistent refrain among protesters is that criticizing the policies of the Israeli government doesn't equate to antisemitism.

Westergaard agrees, but says that's not what he's experiencing.

"I've heard, 'We want all Zionists off campus.' I've heard 'death to the Zionist state, death to Zionists.' And as a Jew, I feel that Zionism and Judaism can be teased apart with a tremendous amount of care and compassion and knowledge," he said. "But it's also just a dog whistle that people use when they're talking about the Jews."

Juliana Castillo, an undergraduate, was also at the meeting with Johnson. She said calls for the safety of students doesn't just include physical well-being.

"There are things like intimidation, like feeling uncomfortable being openly Jewish or taking a direct route across campus," she said. "It doesn't always manifest as a lack of physical safety. Sometimes it manifests as being unwelcome in a class or feeling like people's viewpoints or perspectives are not respected."

She said even isolated incidents of antisemitism that get circulated widely online have a "creeping impact on people."

"Just knowing that something has happened to your friends, or to people you know in a place you're familiar with, makes it difficult to have a sense that this is your campus," she said. "These things do build up."

Bipartisan push on more bills to counter antisemitism

Lawmakers say this bill is just one step — and that there's more action the chamber should take to combat antisemitism.

Torres and Lawler have introduced another bill that would place a monitor on a campus to report back to the federal government on whether the university is complying with Title VI , which prohibits discrimination based on race, color or national origin in places like colleges that receive federal funding.

"A law is only as effective as its enforcement, and the purpose here is to provide an enforcement mechanism where none exist," Torres said. "And I want to be clear: the legislation would empower the federal Department of Education not to impose a monitor on every college or university, only when there's reason to suspect a violation of Title VI."

Meanwhile, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries is urging Johnson to bring the bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act to the floor.

"The effort to crush antisemitism and hatred in any form is not a Democratic or Republican issue" said Jeffries in a statement.

Letter to Speaker Mike Johnson on the Bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act. pic.twitter.com/z3weUD54zm — Hakeem Jeffries (@RepJeffries) April 29, 2024

The bill would establish a senior official in the Department of Education to monitor for antisemitism on college campuses and create a national coordinator in the White House to oversee a new interagency task force to counter antisemitism.

"We have negotiated that bill for nine months. It is bipartisan. It's bicameral," said North Carolina Democrat Kathy Manning, who co-chairs the House Bipartisan Task Force for Combating Antisemitism.

Manning was part of a trio of House Democrats who visited Columbia University last week to hear from Jewish students.

Manning points to a study from the American Jewish Committee that found that 46% of American Jews since October 7 say they have altered their behavior out of fear of antisemitism .

"I find that deeply disturbing, that in the United States of America, people are now afraid to be recognized in public as being Jewish," Manning said.

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House passes bill to expand definition of antisemitism amid growing campus protests over Gaza war

Pro-Palestinian protesters camp out in tents at Columbia University on Saturday, April 27, 2024 in New York. With the death toll mounting in the war in Gaza, protesters nationwide are demanding that schools cut financial ties to Israel and divest from companies they say are enabling the conflict. Some Jewish students say the protests have veered into antisemitism and made them afraid to set foot on campus. (AP Photo)

Pro-Palestinian protesters camp out in tents at Columbia University on Saturday, April 27, 2024 in New York. With the death toll mounting in the war in Gaza, protesters nationwide are demanding that schools cut financial ties to Israel and divest from companies they say are enabling the conflict. Some Jewish students say the protests have veered into antisemitism and made them afraid to set foot on campus. (AP Photo)

FILE -President of Columbia University Nemat Shafik testifies before the House Committee on Education and the Workforce hearing on “Columbia in Crisis: Columbia University’s Response to Antisemitism” on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 17, 2024. Columbia University president Nemat (Minouche) Shafik is no stranger to navigating complex international issues, having worked at some of the world’s most prominent global financial institutions.(AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib, File)

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The House passed legislation Wednesday that would establish a broader definition of antisemitism for the Department of Education to enforce anti-discrimination laws, the latest response from lawmakers to a nationwide student protest movement over the Israel-Hamas war.

The proposal, which passed 320-91 with some bipartisan support, would codify the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism in Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a federal anti-discrimination law that bars discrimination based on shared ancestry, ethnic characteristics or national origin. It now goes to the Senate where its fate is uncertain.

Action on the bill was just the latest reverberation in Congress from the protest movement that has swept university campuses. Republicans in Congress have denounced the protests and demanded action to stop them, thrusting university officials into the center of the charged political debate over Israel’s conduct of the war in Gaza. More than 33,000 Palestinians have been killed since the war was launched in October, after Hamas staged a deadly terrorist attack against Israeli civilians.

If passed by the Senate and signed into law, the bill would broaden the legal definition of antisemitism to include the “targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity.” Critics say the move would have a chilling effect on free speech throughout college campuses.

Smoke rises following an Israeli airstrike east of Rafah, Gaza Strip, Monday, May 6, 2024. (AP Photo/Ismael Abu Dayyah)

“Speech that is critical of Israel alone does not constitute unlawful discrimination,” Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., said during a hearing Tuesday. “By encompassing purely political speech about Israel into Title VI’s ambit, the bill sweeps too broadly.”

Advocates of the proposal say it would provide a much-needed, consistent framework for the Department of Education to police and investigate the rising cases of discrimination and harassment targeted toward Jewish students.

“It is long past time that Congress act to protect Jewish Americans from the scourge of antisemitism on campuses around the country,” Rep. Russell Fry, R-S.C., said Tuesday.

The expanded definition of antisemitism was first adopted in 2016 by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, an intergovernmental group that includes the United States and European Union states, and has been embraced by the State Department under the past three presidential administrations, including Joe Biden’s

Previous bipartisan efforts to codify it into law have failed. But the Oct. 7 terrorist attack by Hamas militants in Israel and the subsequent war in Gaza have reignited efforts to target incidents of antisemitism on college campuses.

Separately, Speaker Mike Johnson announced Tuesday that several House committees will be tasked with a wide probe that ultimately threatens to withhold federal research grants and other government support for universities, placing another pressure point on campus administrators who are struggling to manage pro-Palestinian encampments, allegations of discrimination against Jewish students and questions of how they are integrating free speech and campus safety.

The House investigation follows several high-profile hearings that helped precipitate the resignations of presidents at Harvard and the University of Pennsylvania. And House Republicans promised more scrutiny, saying they were calling on the administrators of Yale, UCLA and the University of Michigan to testify next month.

The House Oversight Committee took it one step further Wednesday, sending a small delegation of Republican members to an encampment at nearby George Washington University in the District of Columbia. GOP lawmakers spent the short visit criticizing the protests and Mayor Muriel Bowser’s refusal to send in the Metropolitan Police Department to disperse the demonstrators.

Bowser on Monday confirmed that the city and the district’s police department had declined the university’s request to intervene. “We did not have any violence to interrupt on the GW campus,” Bowser said, adding that police chief Pamela Smith made the ultimate decision. “This is Washington, D.C., and we are, by design, a place where people come to address the government and their grievances with the government.”

It all comes at a time when college campuses and the federal government are struggling to define exactly where political speech crosses into antisemitism. Dozens of U.S. universities and schools face civil rights investigations by the Education Department over allegations of antisemitism and Islamophobia.

Among the questions campus leaders have struggled to answer is whether phrases like “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” should be considered under the definition of antisemitism.

The proposed definition faced strong opposition from several Democratic lawmakers, Jewish organizations as well as free speech advocates.

In a letter sent to lawmakers Friday, the American Civil Liberties Union urged members to vote against the legislation, saying federal law already prohibits antisemitic discrimination and harassment.

“H.R. 6090 is therefore not needed to protect against antisemitic discrimination; instead, it would likely chill free speech of students on college campuses by incorrectly equating criticism of the Israeli government with antisemitism,” the letter stated.

Jeremy Ben-Ami, president of the centrist pro-Israel group J Street, said his organization opposes the bipartisan proposal because he sees it as an “unserious” effort led by Republicans “to continually force votes that divide the Democratic caucus on an issue that shouldn’t be turned into a political football.”

Associated Press writers Ashraf Khalil, Collin Binkley and Stephen Groves contributed to this report.

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Talk of an Immigrant ‘Invasion’ Grows in Republican Ads and Speech

Once relegated to the margins of the national debate, the word is now part of the party’s mainstream message on immigration.

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Former President Donald J. Trump and Governor Greg Abbott walking with military members on a path lined with barbed wire.

By Jazmine Ulloa

Reporting from Washington, D.C.

A campaign ad from a Republican congressional candidate from Indiana sums up the arrival of migrants at the border with one word. He doesn’t call it a problem or a crisis.

He calls it an “invasion.”

The word invasion also appears in ads for two Republicans competing for a Senate seat in Michigan. And it shows up in an ad for a Republican congresswoman seeking re-election in central New York, and in one for a Missouri lieutenant governor running for the state’s governorship. In West Virginia, ads for a Republican representative facing an uphill climb for the Senate say President Biden “created this invasion” of migrants.

It was not so long ago that the term invasion had been mostly relegated to the margins of the national immigration debate. Many candidates and political figures tended to avoid the word, which echoed demagoguery in previous centuries targeting Asian, Latino and European immigrants. Few mainstream Republicans dared use it.

But now, the word has become a staple of Republican immigration rhetoric. Use of the term in television campaign ads in the current election cycle has already eclipsed the total from the previous one , data show, and the word appears in speeches, TV interviews and even in legislation proposed in Congress.

The resurgence of the term exemplifies the shift in Republican rhetoric in the era of former President Donald J. Trump and his right-wing supporters . Language once considered hostile has become common , sometimes precisely because it runs counter to politically correct sensibilities. Immigration has also become more divisive, with even Democratic mayors complaining about the number of migrants in their cities.

Democrats and advocates for migrants denounce the word and its recent turn from being taboo. Historians and analysts who study political rhetoric have long warned that the term dehumanizes those to whom it refers and could stoke violence, noting that it appeared in writings by perpetrators of deadly mass shootings in Pittsburgh, Pa.; El Paso, Texas; and Buffalo, N.Y., in recent years.

Republicans defend using the word and see it as an apt descriptor for a situation that they argue has intensified beyond crisis levels and one that could help sway voters.

Mike Speedy, the Indiana congressional candidate whose ad used the word, is running on calls to tighten the nation’s southern border. Mr. Speedy, a state lawmaker, traveled nearly 2,000 miles to Yuma, Ariz., to film his ad among the rusty slabs of the border fence. He contended that invasion was an accurate word because it describes a force that overwhelms and does not necessarily involve weapons. He said in an interview that he was not concerned that the word could incite others to violence. “If they act on their hatred, they are a common criminal and they should be put to court,” he said.

The word invasion has appeared in 27 television ads for Republican candidates — accounting for more than $5 million in ad spending — ahead of the November 2024 election, according to early April data from AdImpact, a media tracking firm. That surpasses the 22 uses of the word during the entire 2022 midterm cycle, which totaled nearly $3.3 million in ad spending. During the 2018 and 2020 election cycles, advertisers spent just under $300,000 in four ads that deployed the term.

America’s Voice, an immigrant advocacy group, has tracked the word’s rise in Congress. The group has collected at least 20 examples of Republicans using it in floor speeches this legislative session, up from seven during the last session and none before that. The term appears in four pieces of legislation this year, compared with seven last year and three in 2022.

Analysts who study political rhetoric and extremism have continued to raise alarm that the word invasion and what they describe as similarly inflammatory language regarding immigration plays into replacement theory . The racist doctrine, which has circulated in far right-wing corners of the internet, holds that Western elites, sometimes manipulated by Jews, want to “replace” and disempower white Americans. The shooters in Pittsburgh, El Paso and Buffalo echoed the theory in online posts, and targeted Jews, Hispanics and Black people in their killings.

“An invasion by its very definition is a hostile entrance or a hostile encroachment,” said Juliette Kayyem, a former Obama administration official who now leads the homeland-security program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. “You are automatically perceiving people who are fleeing their countries for a million reasons — most of them not hostile — as enemies.”

Representative Alex Mooney, the West Virginia Republican competing against a Trump-endorsed candidate, echoed Mr. Speedy’s view. “There is film footage of people forcing their way into our country along the Texas-Mexico border and the Biden administration is just letting it happen,” he said.

Maca Casado, the Hispanic media director for the Biden campaign, said voters would again reject Mr. Trump’s immigration rhetoric, describing it as “cruel and anti-American politics as usual to distract from an agenda that does nothing to address the things voters actually care about.”

The Trump campaign said that Mr. Biden was allowing undocumented immigrants “to invade our border.”

“By definition, an invasion is an incursion by a large number of people or things into a place,” said Karoline Leavitt, the campaign’s national press secretary. “There is no better way to describe Joe Biden’s open border, which has allowed tens of millions of people to freely enter our country.”

Political speech stoking fears of an invasion at the southern border is as old as the border itself. The jagged, 2,000-mile line dividing Mexico and the United States was born of a war that left each side wary of attack from the other. During the 19th century, with Chinese laborers migrating to work on the railroads, rallying cries of a feared Chinese invasion led to the nation’s first exclusionary immigration laws based explicitly on race. Political leaders stirred similar fears regarding migrants from Japan , Korea, India and southern and Eastern Europe .

Pat Buchanan was among the few ardent users of the word in recent decades, warning of “immigrant invasions” eroding Western society during his unsuccessful campaigns for the Republican presidential nomination in the 1990s. And Gov. Pete Wilson of California, seeking re-election in 1992, ran ads urging Congress to “ stop the invasion ” of Mexican and other Latino immigrants.

Mr. Trump gave the word a new currency. Throughout his presidency, he portrayed migrants as invading masses, and his 2020 re-election campaign pushed the idea through hundreds of Facebook ads. Mr. Trump has made immigration his signature issue for 2024 and has only escalated his remarks, at times using language that invokes the racial hatred of Hitler by describing migrants as “poisoning the blood of our country.”

Other Republicans followed suit. Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas, promising to finish Mr. Trump’s border wall, warned that “ homes are being invaded .” His office has since argued that illegal immigration and drug smuggling are an “invasion” under the U.S. Constitution, authorizing Texas to “engage in war” in the name of border security.

Immigrant-rights groups argue the language has not helped curb border crossings — which started rising under Mr. Trump and slowed early on in the pandemic before increasing again — or aided Republicans in elections. Predictions of a red wave in 2022 fizzled despite Republican fear-mongering about migrants, said Zachary Mueller, senior research director at America’s Voice.

“Yes, it works to mobilize their base,” he said. “But I don’t think the vast majority of people are going to sign up for that level of vitriol.”

John Thomas, a Republican strategist in California, said he did not expect the talk of invasion to fade.

“The word invasion matches the intensity that a lot of the electorate feels on that issue right now,” he said. Its use is “only going to ramp up as we head into November.”

Jazmine Ulloa is a national politics reporter for The Times, covering the 2024 presidential campaign. She is based in Washington. More about Jazmine Ulloa

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House passes antisemitism bill over complaints from First Amendment advocates

Critics argue the Antisemitism Awareness Act, which gained overwhelming GOP and Democratic support, is an effort to silence criticism of Israel

article meaning parts of speech

House Republicans are seeking to unite their unruly majority around an evergreen conservative cause, devising a strict response to the wave of pro-Palestinian protests that have roiled college campuses across the country in recent weeks.

GOP leaders this week announced plans for new oversight investigations of elite universities where — in the words of House Republican Whip Tom Emmer (Minn.) — “pro-terrorist anti-Semites [are] taking over.” And on Wednesday, they passed the Antisemitism Awareness Act, which its advocates said would empower the federal government to crack down on anti-Israel protests on campuses by codifying a definition of antisemitism that encompasses not just threats against Jews, but also certain criticisms of Israel itself.

“We must give the Department of Education the tools to … hold college administrators accountable for refusing to address antisemitism on their campuses,” said Rep. Michael Lawler (R-N.Y.), the bill’s lead sponsor.

The bill was approved by a vote of 320-91, with a majority of Democrats — 133 — joining Republicans.

College protests over Gaza war

article meaning parts of speech

Lawler’s bill — with 61 co-sponsors, including 15 Democrats — would create “a clear definition of antisemitism” in U.S. law that the Education Department could then use to cut off funding to academic institutions found to tolerate such behaviors. The definition, however, has drawn fierce opposition from First Amendment advocates such as the American Civil Liberties Union and liberal Democrats, who say it veers sharply into the realm of restricting political views.

It’s unclear what the bill’s prospects are in the Democratic-controlled Senate or how the White House views it. Previous iterations failed to muster sufficient support in Congress, but both its supporters and opponents say the ongoing protests and a rise in antisemitism since Hamas ’s Oct. 7 attack on Israel have injected fresh momentum.

If it does become law, the federal definition of antisemitism, adopted from the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance , would include such speech as “claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor”; “applying double standards” to Israel that are “not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation”; and “drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis.”

The idea is that student-held signs, for example, like those displayed at Columbia University in New York this week, calling for “revolution” or “intifada” — which means “uprising” — would amount to antisemitism under the law. The Education Department, in turn, could then revoke federal research grants and other funding to a university that fails to take punitive action toward students who express such views, the bill’s proponents say.

Several Republicans said opposing Zionism — the political movement to create, and now to preserve, a state for Jews in their biblical homeland — would qualify as antisemitism under the law. Some suggested that even holding a prolonged protest would constitute antisemitism. “The erection of encampments on college campuses isn’t an expression of speech,” Rep. Marcus J. Molinaro (R-N.Y.) said on the House floor Wednesday. “It is a direct threat to Jewish students on college campuses.”

But the “double standards” example and the notion that Nazi comparisons are off-limits in the case of Israel, among other aspects of the definition, are deeply problematic because they’re too broad and present “viewpoint discrimination,” said Tyler Coward, lead counsel for government affairs at the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression, a First Amendment advocacy organization.

“Nowhere else in First Amendment law does it say that you can criticize a certain country up to a certain limit, or else you might risk violating federal anti-discrimination law,” he said.

“The First Amendment allows individuals to criticize every country in the world, including our own” — and that includes comparing other governments to the Nazis, however disturbing many Americans may find that comparison to be, Coward said.

Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), a Jewish lawmaker who has co-sponsored other bills aimed at combating antisemitism and described himself Wednesday as a “deeply committed Zionist,” urged colleagues to reject Lawler’s bill, which he characterized as “misguided” because it “threatens to chill constitutionally protected speech.”

“If this legislation were to become law,” he said, universities wanting to avoid federal investigation “could end up suppressing protected speech criticizing Israel or supporting Palestinians,” and students and faculty might be driven to self-censor.

Debate on the House floor grew heated at times, as both sides accused the other of neglecting American values in favor of politics. Pro-Palestinian campus protests have included Jewish participants, and some Democrats noted that several liberal Jewish groups oppose the bill, in addition to the man who authored the antisemitism definition for the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.

Republicans pointed to incidents of violence and destruction, exaggerating some — such as a report by a Jewish student at Yale who said she was “ jabbed ” in the eye by a pro-Palestinian protester bearing a Palestinian flag. According to irate lawmakers on the House floor this week, the student, who appeared uninjured when she spoke to CBS News, had been “stabbed in the eye.”

Rep. Josh Gottheimer (N.J.), a centrist Democrat who co-sponsored the legislation with Lawler, pushed back on his colleagues’ free speech concerns, saying he “ensured” the bill “protects the First Amendment” because that is important to him. “It allows criticism of Israel,” he said. “It doesn’t allow calls for the destruction or elimination of the Jewish state.”

Opposing elite, often left-leaning universities has for years been a popular rallying cry for Republicans, and it could prove even more so in an election year in which intraparty tension over how to handle the war in Ukraine and other national security policy questions has slowed congressional action in other areas. The antisemitism bill and college oversight efforts allow conservatives to demonstrate moral clarity in support of Israel while spotlighting divisions among Democrats.

“What Republicans seem to be doing is bringing forward things that they hope will divide us,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), leader of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told reporters this week, noting that several liberal Jewish groups oppose the measure because the definition of antisemitism is so broad. “So why would you do that, except if you want to weaponize antisemitism and you want to use it as a political ploy?”

Polls have shown the American public has grown uncomfortable and divided over U.S.-Israel policy in the six-plus months since Hamas waged a devastating cross-border terrorist attack on Israel and Israel began its punishing campaign of retaliation, destroying most of the Gaza Strip’s infrastructure and displacing most of its 2.2 million Palestinian residents.

The ongoing Israeli offensive, which has so far killed more than 34,000 people, according to local health authorities, and given rise to famine , has unleashed a furor among liberal college students in particular, who have disrupted classes and shut down campuses in protest, calling for their institutions to divest from funding, investments and partnerships with the state of Israel.

Police in New York arrested some 300 people overnight Wednesday, after officers in riot gear breached a campus building that had been occupied by pro-Palestinian protesters. A separate pro-Palestinian encampment at UCLA meanwhile came under attack from counterprotesters, who unleashed fireworks and chemical sprays at the student activists, igniting clashes and a fierce rebuke from the campus newspaper’s editorial board.

Many liberals have called for police restraint and for university administrators to respect a long-standing tradition of campus activism, including antiwar movements. Democrats who oppose Lawler’s bill also called the Republican effort to crack down on antisemitism disingenuous and hypocritical, pointing to Republicans’ frequent defense of free speech — and condemnation of liberals’ “cancel culture” — in other contexts.

“How dare the party of Donald Trump and Marjorie Taylor Greene come down here and lecture Democrats about antisemitism,” Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez (D-N.M.) said on the House floor Tuesday. “Remember, the leader of the Republican Party, Donald Trump, dines with Holocaust deniers , and said there were ‘ fine people on both sides ’ at a rally where white supremacists chanted ‘Jews will not replace us.’”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) said she opposed the bill because she was concerned it could be used to persecute Christians who claim the Jews killed Jesus — a belief that is regarded by many Jews as an antisemitic trope. “Antisemitism is wrong,” she wrote on X on Wednesday, adding that she would not vote for the law because it “could convict Christians of antisemitism for believing the gospel that says Jesus was handed over to Herod to be crucified by the Jews.”

House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries (N.Y.) urged Democrats to back an alternative, also bipartisan antisemitism measure introduced in the House by Rep. Kathy Manning (D-N.C.) that would establish new positions focused on antisemitism at the White House and the Education Department and require federal law enforcement to conduct an annual threat analysis of antisemitism in America.

Mariana Alfaro contributed to this report.

Israel-Gaza war

The Israel-Gaza war has gone on for six months, and tensions have spilled into the surrounding region .

The war: On Oct. 7, Hamas militants launched an unprecedented cross-border attack on Israel that included the taking of civilian hostages at a music festival . (See photos and videos of how the deadly assault unfolded ). Israel declared war on Hamas in response, launching a ground invasion that fueled the biggest displacement in the region since Israel’s creation in 1948 .

Gaza crisis: In the Gaza Strip, Israel has waged one of this century’s most destructive wars , killing tens of thousands and plunging at least half of the population into “ famine-like conditions. ” For months, Israel has resisted pressure from Western allies to allow more humanitarian aid into the enclave .

U.S. involvement: Despite tensions between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and some U.S. politicians , including President Biden, the United States supports Israel with weapons , funds aid packages , and has vetoed or abstained from the United Nations’ cease-fire resolutions.

History: The roots of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and mistrust are deep and complex, predating the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 . Read more on the history of the Gaza Strip .

  • Six months of the Israel-Gaza war: A timeline of key moments April 7, 2024 Six months of the Israel-Gaza war: A timeline of key moments April 7, 2024
  • Colombia is the latest and largest country to sever ties with Israel May 1, 2024 Colombia is the latest and largest country to sever ties with Israel May 1, 2024
  • Hamas touts ‘positive spirit’ in cease-fire talks, will travel to Cairo May 2, 2024 Hamas touts ‘positive spirit’ in cease-fire talks, will travel to Cairo May 2, 2024

article meaning parts of speech

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  2. Parts of Speech Definitions and Types with Examples

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  1. The 9 Parts of Speech: Definitions and Examples

    Every sentence you write or speak in English includes words that fall into some of the nine parts of speech. These include nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, articles/determiners, and interjections. (Some sources include only eight parts of speech and leave interjections in their own category.)

  2. Parts of Speech and Sentence Structure: Articles

    The articles in the English language are the, a, an: An article belongs to a noun, but it can also be placed before a number or an adjective: the man, the tall man, the two men, the two tall men. As you can see, there are two different kinds of articles: a line, a house, a kitchen, a person, an apple, an airport, an idea, an umbrella.

  3. Articles

    Articles are the smallest of the small but still serve an important function. We have three articles in the English language: a, an and the. The is the definite article, which means it refers to a specific noun in a group. A or an is the indefinite article, which means it refers to any member of a group. You would use the indefinite article ...

  4. What are Definite, Indefinite Articles? Definition, Examples of English

    An indefinite article is a part of speech that identifies a nonspecific noun. "A" and "an" are the only indefinite articles. Placing "a" or "an" before a noun makes it nonspecific. To say "a book" refers to any book, not a single specific book. The examples below will further outline the difference. a cow (nonspecific ...

  5. Articles in Grammar: From "A" to "The" With "An" and "Some" Between

    In English grammar, a pronoun is a word that takes the place of a noun, noun phrase, or noun clause. So, instead of the sentence: "Give the book to me," you would replace the definite article, "the," as well as the noun it modifies, "book," with the pronoun, "it," to yield the sentence: "Give it to me." A demonstrative is a determiner or a ...

  6. Article (grammar)

    In grammar, an article is any member of a class of dedicated words that are used with noun phrases to mark the identifiability of the referents of the noun phrases. The category of articles constitutes a part of speech.. In English, both "the" and "a(n)" are articles, which combine with nouns to form noun phrases.Articles typically specify the grammatical definiteness of the noun phrase, but ...

  7. Definite and Indefinite Articles

    English has two types of articles to precede nouns: definite (the) and indefinite (a/an). You can improve the articles that appear in your dissertation by: not using unnecessary articles with plural nouns, not using "a" or "an" with uncountable nouns, using articles with singular countable nouns, correctly choosing "a" or "an ...

  8. Articles in English

    An article is a part of speech. In English, there is one definite article: "the." There are two indefinite articles: "a" and "an." The articles refer to a noun. Some examples are: "the house," "a ...

  9. What is a Grammatical Article? Complete ESL Guide to Articles

    Articles (a, an, the) are words placed before a noun in a sentence . They are used to introduce the noun. Learn uses, rules, & more with our complete guide.

  10. Articles in Grammar: Useful Rules, List & Examples • 7ESL

    In many languages, articles are a special part of speech which cannot be easily combined with other parts of speech. Article Grammar: A An The - Image 1. Pin. Different Types Of Article. ... Indefinite Article Definition. The words A and An are called indefinite articles. We can use them with singular nouns to talk about any single person or ...

  11. Articles in English

    An article is a short monosyllabic word that is used to define if the noun is specific or not. Articles are normally used before nouns and since they are used to speak about the noun, they can be considered as adjectives. Look at how various dictionaries define an article to have a much clearer idea of what they are.

  12. Parts of Speech

    This is the article that is used to define something specific. For example: "This is the house," or "this is the new car.". Used in this way, it presumes that the house or car were already previously mentioned and made known to the audience or reader. In other words, the article makes reference to a specific house and car, not a generic ...

  13. Parts of Speech: A Super Simple Grammar Guide with Examples

    The Verb (v.) A verb is one of the most important parts of speech and is a word that is used to describe an action. There are three main types of verbs which are detailed below. Examples: Walk, is, seem, realize, run, see, swim, stand, go, have, get, promise, invite, listen, sing, sit, laugh, walk….

  14. The 8 Parts of Speech

    The parts of speech are classified differently in different grammars, but most traditional grammars list eight parts of speech in English: nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections. Some modern grammars add others, such as determiners and articles. Many words can function as different parts of ...

  15. Parts of Speech: Complete Guide (With Examples and More)

    The parts of speech refer to categories to which a word belongs. In English, there are eight of them : verbs , nouns, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections. Many English words fall into more than one part of speech category. Take the word light as an example.

  16. The 8 Parts of Speech

    The parts of speech are classified differently in different grammars, but most traditional grammars list eight parts of speech in English: nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections. Some modern grammars add others, such as determiners and articles. Many words can function as different parts of ...

  17. What Is a Determiner?

    Definite and indefinite articles. Articles are sometimes classed as their own part of speech, but they are also considered a type of determiner.. The definite article the is used to refer to a specific noun (i.e., one that is unique or known).. Examples: Definite article in a sentence The moon looks beautiful tonight.. Can I borrow the book on the table?. The indefinite articles a and an are ...

  18. Understanding the 8 Parts of Speech: Definitions and Examples

    In the English language, it's commonly accepted that there are 8 parts of speech: nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, pronouns, conjunctions, interjections, and prepositions. Each of these categories plays a different role in communicating meaning in the English language. Each of the eight parts of speech—which we might also call the "main ...

  19. Understanding Parts of Speech (9 Types With Examples)

    These nine parts of speech are namely: Verbs, Nouns, Adjectives, Determiners, Adverbs, Pronouns, Prepositions, Conjunctions, and Interjections. Another additional classification is used as a part of speech, i.e., Articles, a subprogram of determiners. To comprehend the meaning and use of each word in the English language, it is essential to ...

  20. Parts of Speech

    8 Parts of Speech Definitions and Examples: 1. Nouns are words that are used to name people, places, animals, ideas and things. Nouns can be classified into two main categories: Common nouns and Proper nouns. Common nouns are generic like ball, car, stick, etc., and proper nouns are more specific like Charles, The White House, The Sun, etc.

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    US House passes controversial bill that expands definition of anti-Semitism. Rights groups warn that the definition could further chill freedom of speech as protests continue on college campuses.

  22. Definite and Indefinite Articles

    English has two types of articles to precede nouns: definite (the) and indefinite (a/an). You can improve the articles that appear in your dissertation by: not using unnecessary articles with plural nouns, not using 'a' or 'an' with uncountable nouns, using articles with singular countable nouns, correctly choosing 'a' or 'an ...

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    The letter pointed in part to an example of antisemitism included in the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's definition, which says antisemitism could include "denying the Jewish people ...

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    Among the questions campus leaders have struggled to answer is whether phrases like "from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free" should be considered under the definition of antisemitism. The proposed definition faced strong opposition from several Democratic lawmakers, Jewish organizations as well as free speech advocates.

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