(an) interesting conjecture

Phoebe1200

Senior Member
Russian-Russia
Hello.
NCIS
(Interrogation room)
Agent:
That's an interesting motive for stealing cash from the CIA's slush fund that they wouldn't want reported missing.
Suspect: That's interesting conjecture.

Shouldn't there be the indefinite article as in?

"That's an interesting conjecture."
 
  • Phoebe1200

    Senior Member
    Russian-Russia
    Hi,
    If the word "interesting" wasn't in the sentence, then would I need the indefinite article?

    e.g."That's (a) conjecture."
     

    Phoebe1200

    Senior Member
    Russian-Russia
    I'm just having a bit of trouble telling the difference between it being countable or uncountable. Could you please tell me how to distinguish it?
     

    The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I'm just having a bit of trouble telling the difference between it being countable or uncountable. Could you please tell me how to distinguish it?
    Nouns are used countably when they can be grammatically plural or singular (and are so marked): I ate two rolls / I ate a roll. They are uncountable when it's impossible to say how many of them there are: I drank some milk / I love surfing. Many nouns can be used either countably or uncountably, depending on the context.
     

    Phoebe1200

    Senior Member
    Russian-Russia
    Thanks for your replies.
    Could you perhaps give an example of the word "conjecture" used both countably and uncountably, so I could see the difference?
     

    srk

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Could you perhaps give an example of the word "conjecture" used both countably and uncountably, so I could see the difference?
    There's one example of each in our dictionary:

    the forming or expressing of an opinion without sufficient proof [uncountable]
    ....Do you know that for a fact or is it only conjecture?
    an opinion or theory so formed or expressed [countable]
    ....Another conjecture was that the butler did it.
     
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