Quantifiers tell us how much or how many there is/are of something. It’s difficult to know when to choose which quantifier so this is a little lesson that will help you understand. Remember, it’s important that you understand the difference between countable and non-countable nouns before you do this lesson.
Here are some quantifiers that work with countable nouns:
- there are many trees
- there are a few trees (not lots, but more than 2)
- there a few trees (there aren’t many trees)
- there are several trees (there are 7 or more trees)
- there are a couple of trees (there are 2 trees)
Here are some quantifiers which work with non-countable nouns:
- I only do a little dancing (I don’t dance very often)
- I sometimes do a little dancing (I dance, but not very often)
- I do a little bit of dancing, but not much. (I don’t do very much dancing)
- I do a good deal of dancing (I dance more than most people)
- I do a great deal of dancing (I dance a lot, I dance more than almost everybody else)
Here are some quantifiers that work with both countable and non-countable nouns:
- all of the trees/dancing
- some trees/dancing
- most of the trees/dancing
- enough trees/dancing
- a lot of trees/dancing
- lots of trees/dancing
- plenty of trees/dancing
Example Quantifier Sentences
- I’ve got some apples in my basket and some water in my bottle.
- I haven’t got any apples in my basket, nor any water in my bottle.
- Have you got any apples in your basket?
- Have you got any water in your bottle?
- I had some visitors last weekend, but we didn’t have any this weekend
- Have you got any rooms free for the night of September 30th ?
- Few people can speak more than three languages
- A few (of the) paintings in this gallery are really good.
- There’s little point in trying to mend it. You’ll never succeed!
- I’ve got a little money left; let’s go and have a drink.