A /An VS One apple

lingkky

Senior Member
chinese
How many apples do you have?

"I have an apple. "
"I have one apple."

We say "an apple" or "one apple" when answering the question if we only got one?
Are they interchangeable?
 
  • lingkky

    Senior Member
    chinese
    If we don't answer a question but just say what we have. What should be said?

    Look! I have an apple.
    Look! I have one apple.

    An or one?
     

    e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    Look! I have an apple seems more likely than to stress the number of apples, as in Look! I have one apple.

    In his hand he held an apple
    is not the same as In his hand he held one apple.
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    We say "one" when talking about the number of apples. In a situation where we might say "two apples" or "three apples", we say "one apple". It is the normal answer to a question like "how many apples?".

    In most other situations, we use "a/an/the" before any countable noun such as apples. So "a/an" is used much more often than "one".

    Do you have anything to eat? Yes, I have an apple.
    If you are hungry, I have an apple you can eat.
    I knew this meeting would last long, so I brought an apple.
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    We also use "one" when we want to omit the noun (because it is already clear). "A/an/the" cannot be used alone. They can only be used before a noun.

    Do you have an apple?
    Yes, I have one.:tick:
    Yes, I have an.:cross:
     

    lingkky

    Senior Member
    chinese
    Would it be wrong to say

    "I have an apple"
    for the question "How many apples do you have? "

    ?
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top