A History Or An History | Which Is Correct English?
For those who have struggled to understand the difference between a and an, it’s time to get educated! This article covers the rules surrounding this tricky grammar rule and explains when to use a versus an.
If the sound is a consonant, choose a; if it is a vowel, choose an. Although there are regional variances, the standard American historic pronunciation begins with a consonant sound (similar to the words hit and hipster), so a historical is the correct choice.
Why do people say “an history”?
That’s a typical error that many people make, but it’s easily prevented. People say “an history” because they’re confusing the word history with the word a story.
While both words are pronounced the same, they have different meanings. A story is something that happened in the past, while history is the study of past events.
In other words, when you write an story, you may use your own experiences as inspiration for what to write about. When you write history, you may use information from books or articles to inform your research on topics such as wars or revolutions.
You’ll want to refer back to the meaning of each word to decide. If you’re writing about things that happened, you should use history (e.g., The civil war was fought between 1861-1865).
However, if you’re writing fiction and describing imagined events (e.g., the two lovers made love), then an story would be more appropriate (e.g., the two lovers made up a passionate scene).
“an history” Or “a history” oxford dictionary?
There are differing opinions on whether the word history should be preceded by the indefinite articles a or an.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, the correct usage is “a history .”However, many argue that the word history should be preceded by an because it is a vowel sound.
It is ultimately up to the person to determine which usage they prefer. Some people find it acceptable to use either a or an, while others will only use one of them.
What’s important is that you make your decision consciously and not arbitrarily pick one out of habit.
“An” is often used in American and “a” in British English. It also depends on your country. Some languages use “an” before words beginning with vowels, such as Spanish (ejemplo: un amigo).
But some words are tricky, related examples;
Honor could be written as either “a honor” or “an honor .”The best way to know what sounds right would be to try both versions out and see which sounds better.
The Story of “An”?
In the early days of the English language, the word an was used before words that began with a vowel sound.
Over time, however, the use of “an” before words that began with a vowel sound fell out of favor and was considered incorrect.
However, in recent years there has been a resurgence in the use of “an” before words that begin with a vowel sound, particularly in formal writing.
While there is no hard and fast rule, it is generally safest to go with the more traditional “a” if you are unsure which to use.
If you use “an” before a word that begins with a vowel sound, be sure not to overuse this construction, as many readers will find it distracting.
Though some people need to debate whether “an” should precede vowel sounds and even more feel compelled to debate whether acronyms like ATM belong in that group, far fewer arguments about whether certain two-letter abbreviations require periods.
That’s because when spelled out, these abbreviations all require at least one capital letter and thus can never be considered lowercase letters;
H2O (water). Though they can be made lowercase by inserting periods between letters (Ph.D. and H2o), they aren’t customarily written that way outside informal contexts like text messages.
Plural and Possessive
The possessive form of history is histories’. The plural form of history is histories. So, if you’re talking about more than one history, you would say histories.
If you’re talking about the history of something, you would say history’s.
The history’s of the world are fascinating.
The Problem with “A”
In the sentence I have a history of heart disease, the word history is a noun. It refers to the study of past events. So, in this example, it would be incorrect to use A as a verb.
B: The Problem with B: In the sentence, I am having my hair done at a salon today, the word hair is not followed by any other words indicating what hair it might be (such as long or curly). So, in this example, it would be incorrect to use B as an adjective.
As for the spelling dilemma between the history and historie of the word, many English speakers who are familiar with American English spell their word as history because that’s how you spell it in America.
But those familiar with British English spell their word as historie.
Why Grammar Matters
Good grammar is critical for clear communication. It helps ensure that your message is conveyed the way you intended.
Additionally, good grammar can make you appear more credible and professional. Poor grammar, on the other hand, can make you look sloppy and uneducated. It can also change the meaning of what you’re trying to say, leading to misunderstandings.
So whether you’re writing a cover letter for a job or sending an email to a client, be sure to proofread your work and fix any errors. Taking the time to do so will pay off in the long run.
The usage of “an” as the article preceding history (an history) is an unnecessary affectation in all significant variations of English. The indefinite article is used before words that start with a lowercase letter and afterwards that start with a vowel sound.
The “h” at the beginning of history seems to be a consonant sound, albeit quiet. There are no modern English dialects where the “h” in history is silent. Thus there’s no reason for anyone to use “an” instead of “a” before the word.
The short answer is that both are correct, but there are some subtle differences between the two.
“A history” is more likely to refer to the study of history. In contrast, “an history” is more likely to refer to a particular event or series of events in the past. In general, though, either can be used without sounding too strange.