“Be an average height” vs. “be the average height”

Would you please tell me if I need to use an or the in before average in the context below? 176cm is an/the average height for men in the US. I’ve heard both. Are both acceptable? If so, can you tell me what is the slight difference between them. Answer You would say "176cm is … Read more

Using article with “regular basis”

Does regular basis needs an article before it? Use computers on regular basis vs. Use computers on a regular basis Answer A basis (meaning the way something happens, or is done or organized) is a singular noun and requires an indefinite article. I stroke my cat on a regular basis I call my mother on … Read more

I am playing a “the Lord of the Rings” game

Which of these sentences is correct? I am playing a “the Lord of the Rings” game. VS I am playing a “Lord of the Rings” game. And which of these is correct? I want to watch some “the Lord of the Rings.” VS I want to watch some “Lord of the Rings.” I am having … Read more

Why do so many websites write “earn minimum wage” when “wage” is a countable noun?

When I searched from the NOW corpus, I found that there are more instances of "earn minimum wage" than "earn the minimum wage", with many results from big US news websites. Why is this? According to most dictionaries, wage is a countable noun, so "earn minimum wage" must be incorrect. But I do find that … Read more

Raindrops on the window pane – with the definite article?

Yesterday I took a photo of raindrops and posted it to Instagram. I used “Raindrops on the window pane” as the description. Then I started to think: Why did I use the definite article here? When I said the phrase in my mind with the indefinite article, “Raindrops on a window pane”, it didn’t sound … Read more

‘Chaldaeans predicted the deaths of many others’ – why ‘the’ here?

Hippocrates cured many illnesses—and then fell ill and died. The Chaldaeans predicted the deaths of many others; in due course their own hour arrived. (Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, translated by Gregory Hays.) My misunderstanding is why the word deaths is used with the here. There is no context preceding this sentence in which we could … Read more