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English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.


Some, any, a little, a few are used to express quantity, to say or ask if you have
a quantity of something or not.
  • Some is used in affirmative sentences, and also when asking for or offering something.

  • Any is used in negative and interrogative sentences.

  • A few is used with countable nouns :          a few apples.

  • A little is used with uncountable nouns :     a little cheese.

Here are some examples :

Affirmative Negative Interrogative
There are some apples in the bowl. There aren't any apples. Are there any apples?
(We don't know how many,
but the bowl is not empty.)
(The bowl is empty.) (We want to know if the bowl contains apples.)
There are a few apples,
not many, a small number.
There aren't many apples. Are there many apples?
There is a little cheese. There isn't much cheese. Is there much cheese?

N.B.:  Asking and offering :  Can I have / would you like some coffee?

See also :  a lot-much-many

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