Not yet registered?
Join our Community and check your progress .







English courses


Lesson 4.5

Quantifiers

Los cuantificadores
Share this

Advertisements

Translate
to Spanish
American female
American male
British female
British male
Listen to
this lesson

Quantifiers indicate the quantity of a noun. They respond to the questions, “How much?” or “How many?”. As with the articles in English, quantifiers define nouns and are always located in front of the noun they define. Some quantifiers can be used only with countable nouns, others only with uncountable nouns and others with both.

Quantifiers indicate the quantity of a noun. They respond to the questions, “How much?” or “How many?”. As with the articles in English, quantifiers define nouns and are always located in front of the noun they define. Some quantifiers can be used only with countable nouns, others only with uncountable nouns and others with both.

Quantifier Countable Uncountable
  many X
  much X
  some X X
  any X X
  no, none X X
  a lot of / lots of X X
  little / a little X
  few / a few X

C = Countable
U = Uncountable

Cuantificador C U
  many
muchos / muchas
X
  much
mucho / mucha
X
  some
algunos / algunas
X X
  any
alguno / alguna
X X
  no, none
no, ninguno/a
X X
  a lot of / lots of
muchos/as
X X
  little / a little
poco / un poco
X
  few / a few
pocos / unos pocos
X

We use quantifiers to express the idea of quantity or number. The following is a summary of the various quantifiers and how and when to use them.

Many

Meaning: a large, but indefinite quantity


Use: This quantifier is used most often in negative and interrogative sentences with countable nouns in plural. “Many” can also be used in affirmative sentences, but it is not very common. More often, in the affirmative we use other quantifiers such as “a lot”.

Examples:

Negative Sentences:

 There are not many tourists.

Interrogative Sentences:

 How many cats do you have?

Affirmative Sentences:

 We have many friends.

Many” can also be combined with “too” or “so” to express the idea of an excessive quantity.

Examples:

 There are too many changes for me.
 There are so many things I want to do!

Much

Meaning: a large, but indefinite quantity


Use: As with “many”, “much” is used to express the idea of a large quantity and is used most often in negative and interrogative sentences. Unlike “many”, we use “much” only with uncountable nouns. “Much” can also be used in affirmative sentences, although it is more formal and not very common.

Examples:

Negative Sentences:

 There is not much time .

Interrogative Sentences:

 How much money does he have?

Affirmative Sentences:

 We have much to do!

Like “many”, “much” can also be combined with “too” or “so” to express the idea of an excessive quantity.

Examples:

 There is too much work .
 We have so much work to do!

Some

Meaning: an unspecified, but limited quantity


Use: “Some” is used with both uncountable nouns as well as countable nouns in plural. It is used in affirmative sentences and occasionally with interrogative sentences (to affirm something). In negative and interrogative sentences, “some” is replaced with “any”.

Examples:

Affirmative Sentences/Countable Nouns:

 She has some apples.

Affirmative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 There is some milk in the kitchen.

Interrogative Sentences:

 Would you like some coffee?

Any

Meaning: an unspecified quantity, one or more


Use: “Any” is used in the same contexts as “some”, but only in negative and interrogative sentences.

Examples:

Negative Sentences/Countable Nouns:

 I do not have any cats.

Negative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 He does not have any money.

Interrogative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 Are there any changes?

Interrogative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 Is there any milk?

No, None

Meaning: not any


Use: As opposed to “no”, “none” can be used without a noun (countable or uncountable). It is therefore generally found at the end of a sentence and only in response to a question that refers to quantity.

Examples:

Interrogative Sentences/Countable Nouns:

 How many pencils are there? None.

Negative Sentences/Countable Nouns:

 There are no pencils.

Interrogative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 How much money do you have? None.

Negative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 I have no money.

A lot of/Lots of

Meaning: a large, but indefinite quantity


Use: This quantifier can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns. As opposed to “much” or “many”, “a lot” is not generally used in interrogative sentences. In general, the use of “lots of” is more informal.

Examples:

Affirmative Sentences/Countable Nouns:

 He has a lot of books.

Negative Sentences/Countable Nouns:

 He does not have a lot of books.

Affirmative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 I have lots of money.

Negative Sentences/Uncountable Nouns:

 I do not have a lot of money.

Little/A little

Meaning: a small, but indefinite quantity


Use: These quantifiers are used only with uncountable nouns. The use of one over the other reflects an opinion regarding the quantity. The use of “a little” implies a positive opinion of the quantity, while the use of “little” reflects a negative attitude.

Examples:

Interrogative Sentences:

 Do you have a little money?

Affirmative Sentences:

 We have little time.

Few/A few

Meaning: a small, but indefinite quantity


Use: These quantifiers can only be used with countable nouns. As we saw above, the use of one over the other reflects an opinion about the quantity. “Few” reflects a negative opinion, while “a few” a positive one.

Examples:

Interrogative Sentences:

 Do you have a few dollars?

Affirmative Sentences:

 There are few tourists here today.
Translate
English Spanish
Listen to
this lesson
Previous lesson
4.4 There Be

Complete the exercises in order to update your progress
Advertisements