Grammar usage

Grammar is one of those areas that people "love to hate." I will cover a variety of grammar topics and grammar usage issues.


Using "A" and "An"

I have often heard these two very small words used incorrectly. Even worse, I have even seen them used wrong in print - in major publications mind you, not simply blogs and things.


The proper use of "A" and "An" is as follows:

"A" precedes words that begin with consonant sounds.

"An" precedes words beginning with the vowel sounds a, e, i, and o.

The letters "U" and "H" have special cases:

Letter U - If the word sounds like "you," then choose "A."

If the word sounds like "uh," then choose "An."

Letter H - If the word starts with a hard sound, as in "horse," choose "A."

If the word starts with a silent letter h, as in "herb," choose "An."

Examples: - an aardvark (a = vowel)

a belly (b = consonant)

an egg (e = vowel)

a UFO (U sounds like "you")

an unidentified flying object (u sounds like "uh")

a helmet (hard h)

an hour (silent h)

I hope this clears things up a bit for you!

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