Zero Article and Omitted Article

Free Online Vocabulary Test
 By Jiabao Hors
Zero Article and Omitted Article
In some cases, we don't see a noun led by article that should be there by generic rules, it's called zero article or omitting article.

1. Title, rank, and job position , especially high rank position or leader title, and as predictive, they usually omit articles. For example:

  • This is Professor Trump, head of the history department.
  • He succeeded his father as president of the company.
  • I will accept the position of software engineer.
  • She worked as reporter to our newspaper.
  • I prefer the title of teacher to others.
  • The officer holds the rank of captain.

2. The predictive or object of "turn" , usually omits article. For example:

  • He was a Conservative but turned Socialist.
  • He has turned artist from an actor.

3. Individual noun usually omits articles , if it represents an abstract concept, or say is used as abstract noun. For example:

  • We were at school together.
  • It's too early for bed.
  • There is room for three more.
  • You should go to hospital at once.
  • She went by bus.
Lots of individual nouns in phrase don't use article because they are treated like abstract concept, such as:
  • from head to end
  • from bumper to bumper
  • from day to day
  • from time to time
  • year after year
  • in case of
  • in place of
  • make fun of
  • make room of

4. Omitting article for date related noun : to express season, month, week, or day. For example:

  • Spring was at hand.
  • She was born in May.
  • He will come on Monday.
  • November 23rd is my birthday.
If date is applied by limiting attribute, it becomes a specific date and usually use definite article to emphasize it. For example:
  • She was born in the May of 1993.
  • It happened in the summer of 2003.

5. Omitting article for time related noun : like daybreak, dusk, dawn, noon, midnight, sunset, sunrise. For example:

  • At daybreak we started on our journey.
  • At dust the lights of the city come on.
  • We left home at sunrise.
  • Before daylight it started to drizzle.
Occasionally definite article is used on time related noun to specify a particular scenario. For example:
  • The dawn here in the mountain is beautiful.
  • One cannot see very far in the dust.

6. Omitting article for nouns of family members : sometimes also for cook, nurse, or anyone living in closing. For example:

  • Mother is with Grandma.
  • Big sister is playing chess with uncle.

7. Omitting article for nouns used in parallel : For example:

  • Host and guest came together.
  • I cannot tell either teacher or students.

8. Other cases to omit article : like news title, announcement, book name. For example:

  • City Congress to be in Session Friday
    (The City Congress to be in Session Friday, news title)
  • Lift out of order
    (The Lift out of order, announcement)
  • Outline History of the Americas
    (An Outline History of Americas, book name)