destruction of / the destruction of

magic dragon feeders

Senior Member
Japanese
I'd appreciate it if someone would answer my questions. Thanks in advance.
What's the difference between A and B? Sorry for no context.
A: What has caused destruction of the environment?
B: What has caused the destruction of the environment?
 
  • JuanEscritor

    Senior Member
    English - AmE
    According to Wiktionary (Wiktionary|destruction) (and I am inclined to agree with what has there been written):

    Noun


    destruction (plural destructions)

    1. The act of destroying. The destruction of the condemned building will take place at noon.
    2. The results of a destructive event. Amid the seemingly endless destruction, a single flower bloomed.
    It would appear there is no difference. There are cases in which destruction must have an article, and there are cases in which it clearly should not have one. However, you have found a case in which both options are grammatical, in my opinion.

    Also, you can look at this thread: Is it fate or simply (the) wind?

    JE
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    There is a (very?) slight difference. Sentence B presupposes that the environment has been destroyed. Now we ask: what caused this? The presupposition in A is a little weaker; it is merely that some (a certain amount of) destruction has taken place. 'The' makes it definite and whole; without it, there is an indefinite amount, and the destruction is perhaps less complete.
     

    magic dragon feeders

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    Hi, entanglebank.Thank you for your answer. I see your idea.
    So how about these (C,D and E)?
    C: Using nuclear weapons will lead to destruction all over the world.
    D: Using nuclear weapons will lead to the destruction of a lot of cities in the world.
    E: Using nuclear weapons will lead to the destruction of the cities.

    Are the usages of "the" in each sentence correct?

    One more please! Are the following 2 sentences both correct, depending on whether it's specifi or not specific?
    F: The development of this suburban area caused arrival of new inhabitants.

    G: The development of this suburban area caused the arrival of new inhabitants.


    Yet one more! Are the following 2 sentences both correct, depending on whether it's specifi or not specific?
    H: Too many vessels in the harbor caused danger of collision among them.
    I: Too many vessels in the harbor caused the danger of collision among them.
     
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