Find the Error 5
(Extract adapted from a letter published in a national newspaper)
What kind of mistake do you see? (Choose one:)
- doesn't make sense
- singular / plural
The mistake is in the sentence which begins: 'It is heartening in this day and
age …' The author has written 'an crowded airport' where it should read: 'a
crowded airport'. The article 'an' is only used when the word which follows it
begins with a vowel sound, such as 'an orange', 'an accident' or 'an
unexpected incident'. The words which come after 'an' in these examples –
'orange', 'accident' and 'unexpected' – all start with a vowel sound: sounds
made when using the vowels in English – a, e, i, o and u. The word 'crowded'
starts with a hard 'c' sound, rather than a vowel sound, so it can't be
preceded by the article 'an'. Article 'a' is the right one to use.
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