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Hi,

I have four answers/responses below, can you give me a typical question for each one? Let's pretend the word "something" stands for a noun.

1. It/He is called the something.

2. It/He is called a something.

3. It/He is called "something."

4. It/He is called something.

(Should I write "It/he" or "It/He"?)

Thank you for your anticipated effort in trying to answer what looks to be a vaguely worded question.
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Hi,

This is an interesting way to ask for the information that you want.

I have four answers/responses below, can you give me a typical question for each one? Let's pretend the word "something" stands for a noun.

1. It/He is called the something.

What is the thing called that moves the computer cursor? It is called the mouse.

What is George Bush called? He is called the President of the United States.

2. It/He is called a something.

What is the thing called that moves a computer cursor. It is called a mouse.

What is a man who flies a plane called? He is called a pilot.

3. It/He is called "something."

What is the capital of the USA called? It is called 'Washington'.

What is the President's exact title? He is called 'President of the United States of America'. Just a made up example

4. It/He is called something.

What is the most important feeling in the world? It is called happiness.

What is a man called who betrays his country? He is called traitor by his countrymen, a man of principle by the enemy. <<< This is not a great example. He is called xxxxxx is a somewhat unnatural kind of sentence.

(Should I write "It/he" or "It/He"? either is OK)

Best wishes, Clive

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I have four answers/responses below, can you give me a typical question for each one? Let's pretend the word "something" stands for a noun.

1. It/He is called the something.

What do you call someone who leads an orchestra?

What is the person who leads an orchestra called?

He (or she) is called the conductor.

2. It/He is called a something.

What do you call the popular Italian food that has dough with cheese, tomato, and other things on top?

It is called pizza.

(There may be other answers, too.)

3. It/He is called "something."

What do you call a dog that helps blind people?

It is called a guide dog.

4. It/He is called something.

What do you call the Manually Operated User Selected Equipment attached to your computer?

It is called the mouse.

It is called a mouse.

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(Should I write "It/he" or "It/He"?)

I don't know. I like the second one because it seems to give the second choice almost as

much emphasis as the first. Other people may have other ideas.

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edited to add

Clive, I hadn't seen your answer when I posted. Sorry .
Thank you.

What is the difference? Why one sentence can have a noun that has the article "a" and the other can not if the sentences are right? Instinctivly, I think I got the main idea but can not quite put things on the paper.

1. What is a man called who betrays his country? He is called traitor (why not a traitor??) by his countrymen.

2. Who is a man who betrays his country? He is called a traitor (why not just "traitor")
Hi,

What is the difference? Why can one sentence have a noun that has the article "a" and the other can not if the sentences are right? Instinctivly, I think I have got the main idea but can not quite put things on the paper.

1. What is a man called who betrays his country? He is called traitor (why not a traitor??) by his countrymen. Yes, you could say 'a traitor'. 'He is called traitor' uses the word traitor like a name, or perhaps like a general category.

'He is called a traitor' uses the words 'a traitor' in a more factual kind of way. He is 'one of many traitors'.

I suggest that you should say 'a traitor'. That's what you'd normally hear. Without the 'a', it sounds uncommon and literary. Please remember that I said earlier about my example without the 'a', This is not a great example. He is called *** is a somewhat unnatural kind of sentence. Consequently, I don't want to spend a lot of effort trying to justify 'He is called traitor'.

Best wishes, Clive
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