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Hello,

Could you please say whether it is always necessary to use an article
in constructions of type

such + {article?} + {singular noun phrase}?

For instance,

"to be in such a hurry"
"such an amount of something"
"a result of such a decision"

Is the indefinite article required after "such" in the following sentence?

"Such [?] result was achieved after long months of diligent work."

Thanks in advance.

--

Victor
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Hi Victor,

Could you please say whether it is always necessary to use an article
in constructions of type My first reaction is to say 'yes', although I'm always reluctant to generalize about these things.

such + {article?} + {singular noun phrase}?

For instance,

"to be in such a hurry"
"such an amount of something"
"a result of such a decision"

Is the indefinite article required after "such" in the following sentence? Yes.

"Such [?] result was achieved after long months of diligent work."

In a commerce or legal context, sometimes the article may be omitted.

"With regard to your claim that our client damaged your solid gold, three-legged chair, our client completely denies that he sat in such chair".

This kind of usage sounds rather archaic.

Here's an example of legalese relating to a patent.

A foldable portable stadium chair folds between a collapsed position for carrying and an open position for seating. Such chair includes an adjustable base member engageable with and securable to a bleacher bench, a chair frame coupled to the adjustable base member and having at least a portion thereof movable towards and away from the adjustable base member, a chair back coupled to a substantially vertical portion of the chair frame, and a chair seat coupled to a substantially horizontal portion of the chair frame.

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7631934.html

Clive
Comments  
As far as I can think, in modern conversational English, the indefinite article is always used in this situation, except in certain set expressions (such as "one such ~" and "any such ~"). (Note that "singular noun" excludes uncountable nouns; for example, "I've never seen such chaos" is fine.)

In older English, or in more formal or technical English (e.g. legal English) you may sometimes see "such <singular noun>" with no article. However, the meaning may not be quite the same. For example, this from a legal book that I found on Google Books:

"If he decides to keep the flat, he must dispose of his house or part of a house within one year of acquiring such house or of moving into the flat..."

"such house" means "the house that has previously been mentioned", whereas "such a house" would mean "a house like the one mentioned".

This article-less style only works in certain contexts: articles certainly cannot be dropped arbitrarily. Unless one is completely fluent in English I think it is hard to know how to use it correctly and it's probably best avoided.

Edit: I wrote this before seeing Clive's response. I don't disagree with anything he said.