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Ordering of determiners, Pre and post determiners

3.3 The Ordering of Determiners

Determiners occur before nouns, and they indicate the kind of reference which the nouns have. Depending on their relative position before a noun, we distinguish three classes of determiners. 





Central Determiner



I met







A sentence like this is somewhat unusual, because it is rare for all three determiner slots to be filled in the same sentence. Generally, only one or two slots are filled. 

3.4 Predeterminers

Predeterminers specify quantity in the noun which follows them, and they are of three major types: 

1. "Multiplying" expressions, including expressions ending in times

twice my salary 
double my salary 
ten times my salary

2. Fractions 

half my salary 
one-third my salary

3. The words all and both

all my salary 
both my salaries

 Predeterminers do not normally co-occur: 

*all half my salary


3.5 Central Determiners

The definite article the and the indefinite article a/an are the most common central determiners: 

all the book 
half a chapter

As many of our previous examples show, the word my can also occupy the central determiner slot. This is equally true of the other possessives: 

all your money 
all his/her money 
all our money 
all their money

The demonstratives, too, are central determiners: 

all these problems 
twice that size 
four times this amount


3.6 Postdeterminers

Cardinal and ordinal numerals occupy the postdeterminer slot: 

the two children 
his fourth birthday

 This applies also to general ordinals: 

my next project 
our last meeting 
your previous remark 
her subsequent letter

Other quantifying expressions are also postdeterminers: 

my many friends 
our several achievements 
the few friends that I have

Unlike predeterminers, postdeterminers can co-occur: 

my next two projects 
several other people


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