Argentina / la Argentina (article)


New Member
English - United States
Hey all,

I'm wondering when, in formal writing, one needs to put an article before the name of the country. For example, would it be "En 1918, a los finales de la guerra, los productos europeos vuelvan a la Argentina" or "En 1918, a los finales de la guerra, los productos europeos vuelvan a Argentina"? Should there always be an article in front of a country?

Side note: should there be an article before the year in the above sentence? Same question goes for years.

  • applepi

    Senior Member
    Hello, AnotherGuiri
    In Spain, we would say "En 1918, a finales de la guerra, los productos europeos vuelan a (la) Argentina"
    In general, rules for "article + countries" are the same in English and Spanish (plurals, Reino...), so "Argentina" doesn't normally have an article, but both options (with and without article) sound right to me in this context.
    About the year, though I have heard some people use an article, I try to avoid that.
    Finally, we normally say "a finales de la guerra" or "al final de la guerra".
    Hope this helps!


    Senior Member
    "Spanish - Spain" "Catalan - Valencia"
    It's been discussed many times here. In Spanish the names of some countries admit an article and some others don't. There are etymological reasons behind it but it doesn't matter too much: it is optional for those who admit it, and the other ones can't have it (excepting those who have it integrated to the name where it is mandatory, such as El Salvador).
    You have a list here, with the article in parentheses when it admits it: Apéndice 5: Lista de países y capitales, con sus gentilicios

    Argentina is one of the countries which admit it, so you can say "Vivo en Argentina" and "Vivo en la Argentina" without distinction. The same for "Vivo en Estados Unidos" and "Vivo en los Estados Unidos". However those who don't admit it will be "Vivo en España" and "Vivo en Francia", and will never have the article.
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