extension of "the"

john at research.haifa.ac.il john at research.haifa.ac.il
Sat Aug 28 03:56:06 UTC 2004

Dear Clancy,
This is completely off the top of my head, but I noticed that 'the'
is  used with chain stores in Michigan ('the Kroger's') but not
in the northeast (at least 10 years ago). In Philadelphia in the
1980's Blacks but not Whites said 'the AIDS'.
John Myhill

Quoting clements <clements at indiana.edu>:

> Dear Funknetters,
> Does anyone know of any studies on the extension of the use of "the". In
> her home town (Stafford VA), a student of mine noted that "the" can be
> used:
> --With most acronyms
> 	I have the AOL.
> 	She has the SARS.
> --With generics
> 	I like the coffee/the candy. (to refer to all coffee or candy)
> --With many proper place names.  These tend to be specific references,
> especially the store names.  If my friend told me she was going to "the
> Pier 1," I would understand that she meant the Pier 1 in Central Park.
> 	We are going to the Nashville.
> 	I'm in the Target.
> 	He bought it at the Pier 1.
> I have heard it reported with abstract nouns, as in
> 	I have the diabetes
> and a colleague of mine in Fort Wayne IN reported hearing it from his
> students.
> Any leads would be most welcome.  If there's interest, I'll write up a
> summary.
> Clancy Clements

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