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Hi

I have a question with the use of article in the sentence given below:

The dog is a faithful animal.

Here, we use "the" before the noun to refer to the entire class of dogs.

My question is whether we can use a/an in place of "the" to refer to the entire class of dogs.

Please give your views.

Suresh

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vsureshMy question is whether we can use a/an in place of "the" to refer to the entire class of dogs.

Yes. In fact, it's better.

The indefinite plural (dogs) is by far the most natural and the most idiomatic of the three main ways you'll see of making a generic reference.
The indefinite article (a dog) is next best.
The definite article (singular) (the dog) is the least best, and also, in my opinion, the most old-fashioned and overly formal. (It is too easily confused with a real instance of a particular dog.)

CJ

Comments  

Thank you, CJ.

The explanation is very helpful.

Suresh