Let's find out what quantifiers are and when we use them.
We use quantifiers when we want to give information about the number of something.
The most common quantifiers are some, any, a or an, a lot of, many and much.
Shall we start with some, any and the indefinite article a and an.
We use a or an before singular countable nouns when there is one of the noun.
I have a dog.
(Only one dog, and the noun dog is countable so we say one dog, two dogs, three dogs, etc.)
I don't have a cat.
(We also use a or an in negative statements)
Do you have a parrot?
(Even if it is a question we use a or an with singular countable nouns and it means: Do you have one parrot?)
We use some and any to talk about a number of something when it is unimportant or unknown.
Some is used in positive statements, while any is used in negative ones and in questions. They both are used with plural countable nouns.
He has some apples.
(Apples is a plural countable noun and it isn't important how many he has)
He doesn't have any apples.
(The sentence is negative so we use any)
Does he have any apples?
(In questions we use any as well)
We also use some and any with uncountable nouns.
She has some water.
(Water is an uncountable noun and we don't know how much of it she has)
She doesn't have any water.
(Any is used because the sentence is negative)
Does she have any water?
(It is a questions so we use any)
But there is an exception. We can use some in questions if we offer or ask for something.
Would you like some apples? or Would you like some water?
(We offer apples or water that's why some is used)
Can I have some water? or Can I have some apples?
(We ask for water or apples and again we use some)
Now shall we move on to other quantifiers: a lot of, many and much?
We use a lot of with both countable and uncountable nouns in positive statements to talk about a big quantity.
I drink a lot of coffee: about twelve cups a day.
(Coffee is an uncountable noun)
I eat a lot of bananas: about five a day.
(Bananas is a plural countable noun)
We can also use a lot of in negative sentences and in questions.
I don't drink a lot of coffee: two cups a day.
I don't eat a lot of bananas: one a day.
Do you drink a lot of coffee?
Do you eat a lot of bananas?
We use a lot without of when we don't say a lot of what.
Do you drink a lot?
I don't eat a lot.
We use many with plural countable nouns and much with uncountable nouns. Much and many are usually used in negative sentences and in questions but rarely in positive statements.
I don't drink much coffee: two cups a day.
I don't eat many bananas: one a day.
Do you drink much coffee?
Do you eat many bananas?
How much …? and How many …? are questions about quantity.
How much ...? is used with uncountable nouns.
How much coffee do you drink a day?
And How many …? We use with plural countable nouns.
How many bananas do you eat a day?
I hope this information was useful for you.
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