Countable and Uncountable Nouns in English
If you are talking about a single item, use “a” or “an.” The usage remains consistent across positive, negative, and question sentences.
Countable Singular Nouns
Positive: I have an apple.
Negative: I don’t have an apple.
Question: Do you have an apple?
Countable Plural Nouns
For plural nouns where the exact quantity doesn’t matter, use “some” in positive sentences and “any” in negative and question sentences. Remember that “some” and “any” can be used for both countable and uncountable nouns.
Positive: I have some apples.
Negative: I don’t have any apples.
Question: Do you have any apples?
Note: “Some” can also be used for offers and suggestions.
“Some” and “any” are also used with uncountable nouns.
Positive: I have some money.
Negative: I don’t have any money.
Question: Do you have any money?
He hasn’t got any friends.
She hasn’t got any luggage.
Note: Remember that “have” becomes “has” for “he” and “she” subjects.
Additional Tips on Nouns
Some nouns can be both countable and uncountable:
- Countable: coffee, tea, water
- Uncountable: enough time
There are also certain rules and exceptions for pluralizing nouns:
- Plural form: -s (apples, dogs)
- Plural form: -es (watches, dresses)
- Plural form: -ies (stories, cities)
- Irregular plurals: children, feet, men, women, people, sheep, teeth, mice, fish
Some nouns have irregular plural forms and are used as singular:
- glasses, jeans, pyjamas, trousers, scissors