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Do you need to add "the" to the sentence? Options
denniszzzzz
Posted: Tuesday, August 12, 2014 11:12:16 PM
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I have two sentences below.

(A) I want to photocopy pictures of the cute animals in this book.

(B) I want to photocopy the pictures of the cute animals in this book.

Without any more context, do you have to add "the" before the word "pictures"?

Thanks.
Shivanand
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 12:04:11 AM
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Location: Bangalore, Karnataka, India
I think it's not required. The is required to specify or define an object and in your sentence you have referred to the cute animals in this book and therefore the before pictures is not required.


Cheers!
srirr
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 1:21:37 AM

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On first reading, both seem correct and OK to me, however I paused for a while and re-read the sentences.
I think, the second sentence is more apt. We should use 'the'.
Kerry.P
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 1:43:25 AM
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Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
(c) I want to photocopy pictures of cute animals in this book.

I'd be interested to hear other pedants opinions; I don't think "the" is necessary anywhere in this sentence.

If I only want to photocopy pictures, not text or sketches, both of these would work.

- I want to photocopy the pictures
- I want to photocopy pictures

If I only want to photocopy pictures of cute animals, not pictures of buildings or boats or boars, then I can say (a), (b) or (c).

However, if the sentence already specifies what it is we want to photocopy, then "the" is not required.
ChrisKC
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 2:26:02 AM

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Location: Chiang Mai, Chiang Mai, Thailand
I agree with Srirr,

Both are correct but a native English speaker would say B a lot more often than A
1emma1
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 3:48:45 AM
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Joined: 8/13/2014
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Neurons: 150
Only (B) is correct
(A) implies any pictures of 'the cute animals' (shown) in (this) book
thar
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 4:00:11 AM

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Joined: 7/8/2010
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Sorry if someone has said this, but surely they just mean different things.
(edit - ah. 1emma1 has said this).

If you don't say 'the' then you just mean 'some'.

You want to photocopy pictures. Which means more than one picture, but does not specify which pictures.
I want to photocopy [some of the] pictures in the book.
It would be far more natural to say ' photocopy pictures from the book'.
That is where you want to select these pictures from.

But 'the' specifies which pictures - the ones in the book - i.e. all of them.
I want to copy the pictures in the book.
Which pictures? The ones in the book.

So it depends on what you want to say.
denniszzzzz
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 4:11:12 AM
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Joined: 6/10/2014
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I am sorry about being confusing. I should revise my sentences and put them in a context.

(A) I want to photocopy pictures of the cute animals in this book.

(B) I want to photocopy the pictures of the cute animals in this book.

(C) I want to photocopy the pictures of cute animals in this book.

(D) I want to photocopy pictures of cute animals in this book.

Here is the context. Assume that you have skimmed through the book and know for sure that it has pictures of cute animals. I do not have specific choices of the pictures; I want any pictures.

Which sentence best fits the context? Thanks.
CovenantWord
Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 8:14:39 AM

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Location: Farmington, Maine, United States
dennis: Which sentence best fits the context?

Based on what thar has written, which would you say best fits, and why?

Yours, Cov
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