Determiners are adjective words like a, an, the (articles), some, any, each, every, either, neither, a great many, little, a little, the little, few, a few, the few, less, fewer, much, many.
To express quantity,
some is used in the affirmative sentences; any in negative sentences e.g.
I have some milk but I do not have any sugar.
She bought some shoes but did not buy any dresses.
a) Some is used in interrogative sentences when making polite requests g.
Will you give me
Will you have
some more tea?
b) In conditional sentences g.
If there are any oranges in the market, please buy
c) Use of any in interrogative or negative sentences g.
Have you any articles on the recent events?
I didn’t see any oranges in the market.
Each, Every; Either, Neither
Each means one of two things or one of any number exceeding two. Every is used while speaking of some number exceeding two e.g.
Each of them had a gun in his hand.
Each of you can go to the market.
Every man expects loyalty from its people.
Either has two meanings:
1) One out of two
2) Each of two (both)
Neither is the negative of either and means neither the one nor the other
You can leave by either door. (By one door or the other)
Trees grew on either side of the road. (Both sides)
He looked at neither side of the road. (Neither this side nor the other.)
Much, Many: Much stands for quantity and many denotes number g.
Was there much milk left in the pot?
Were there many people watching the movie?
We haven’t got many books.
She doesn’t have much more.
Note: The expressions which may be used instead of a great deal (of), a good deal (of), a large quantity (of), plenty of, a lot (of) while many, are the expressions used instead of much are
A great deal (of), a good deal (of), a large quantity (of), plenty of, a lot (of)
Little, A Little, The Little
Little means hardly any or not much. It has a negative meaning e.g.
There was little money in the house.
There was little that she could do to help the patient.
A little means some at least. It has an affirmative meaning e.g.
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
There is a little milk left in the pot.
The little means all. It can be used both positively and negatively e.g.
He wasted the little strength he had in being angry.
It means …….. .
The strength he had was not much. (negative)
He wasted all his strength. (positive)
Few means not many and has a negative meaning e.g.
He has few books in his study room.
A few means some at least. It has a positive meaning e.g.
He has few books left in the library.
The few means all. It can be used both positively and negatively e.g.
the few friends he had.
(It means, he lost all the friends he had (positive).The friends he had were not many (negative).
Less is used with reference to quantity and fewer with reference to number e.g.
The huge pumpkin weighed no less than ten pounds.
I cannot buy less than ten kilograms of rice.
No fewer than two thousand people joined the strike.
No fewer than ten civilians were hurt in the firing.