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Quantifiers Exercises – English Grammar Test

Try the exercise #1 – Intermediate
Try the exercise #2 – Upper Intermediate

Usage of quantifiers:

A few and few, a little and little
Graded Quantifiers
Some or Any?
Something, Anything, Someone, Anyone etc.
Enough

A few and few, a little and little

These expressions show the speaker’s attitude towards the quantity he/she is referring to.

A few (for countable nouns) and a little (for uncountable nouns) describe the quantity in a positive way:

  • “I’ve got a few friends” (= maybe not many, but enough)
  • “I’ve got a little money” (= I’ve got enough to live on)

Few and little describe the quantity in a negative way:

  • Few people visited him in hospital (= he had almost no visitors)
  • He had little money (= almost no money)

Graded Quantifiers

They are like comparatives and hold a relative position on a scale of increase or decrease.

INCREASE (0% to 100%)
With plural countable nouns:
many more most
With uncountable nouns:
much more most
     
DECREASE (100% to 0%)
With plural countable nouns:
few fewer fewest
With uncountable nouns:
little less least

Examples:

· There are many people in Poland, more in India, but the most people live in China.
· Much time and money is spent on education, more on health services but the most is spent on national defense.
· Few rivers in Europe aren’t polluted.
· Fewer people die young now than in the nineteenth century.
· The country with the fewest people per square kilometre must be Australia.
· Scientists have little hope of finding a complete cure for cancer before 2010.
· She had less time to study than I did but had better results.
· Give that dog the least opportunity and it will bite you.

Quantifiers with countable and uncountable nouns

Some adjectives and adjectival phrases can only go with uncountable nouns (salt, rice, money, advice), and some can only go with countable nouns (friends, bags, people). The words in the middle column can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns.

With Uncountable Nouns With Both With Countable Nouns
How much? How much? or How many? How many?
a little no/none a few
a bit (of) not any a number (of)
  some (any) several
a great deal of a lot of a large number of
a large amount of plenty of a great number of
a large quantity of lots of a majority of

Note: much and many are used in negative and question forms.

Example:

How much money have you got?
How many cigarettes have you smoked?

· There’s not much sugar in the cupboard.
· There weren’t many people at the party.

They are also used with too, (not) so, and (not) as

There were too many people at the party.
It’s a problem when there are so many people.
There’s not so much work to do this week.
In positive statements, we use a lot of:

· I’ve got a lot of work this week.
· There were a lot of people at the concert.

Next page

Try the exercise #1 – Intermediate
Try the exercise #2 – Upper Intermediate
Back to Grammar Table