Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
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Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with a passion. Learn More

Is a definite article (the) necessary for "most"?

I am a bit confused about whether or not I should use “the” before “most” in the following sentence. I have searched on the internet but I have before more confused about the issue so please help me in this regard. I will add this sentence to my formal writing.

The sentence:

"What fascinates me the most about the textile industry is that it drives the economy of many third world countries”

or

"What fascinates me most about the textile industry is that it drives the economy of many third world countries”

Which one is correct and why?

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Comments

Both are correct. Without "the" is preferable in my opinion under the rule of omit needless words. There is no why. Grammar is arbitrary. It's just the way we do it.

Jimluckett Jul-19-2022

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"...fascinates me most..." seems to me preferable. The word "the" doesn't add any value. Also, you could rephrase the sentence as "Of all the things I've learned about the textile industry, I am most fascinated by the fact that it drives..." or Of all the things I've learned about the textile industry, most fascinating to me is the fact that it drives..." Both of these formulations, to my ear, do not call for "the" before "most". So I think it can well be omitted in the original sentence.

don.kacher@gmail.com Jul-19-2022

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I think both are correct, but I vote to leave out the “the”.

Johnillinois Jul-19-2022

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You mentioned this is Formal Writing you're adding this sentence to, so I would use the in front of the word most. Worth mentioning however, non preferably, the word most is able to stand on its own in this sentence. In addition, I would omit the needless word "That", and replace it with the more appropriate comma after the word "Is". So it reads; "What fascinates me the most about the textile industry is, it drives the economy of many third world countries.". "The most" is also preferred as it is the superlative of the action verb "drives".

arkansasmarine Jul-19-2022

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The second sentence without the article "the" is correct. I feel it is so as to flow of the sentence.

KhaldunQaysi Jul-20-2022

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Both are acceptable. It is purely a matter of preference, and no editor should complain about either version.
English grammar developed in much the same way: A particular preference becomes the most used, and then becomes the standard rule. Some American usage is being absorbed into UK usage through TV programmes (or programs if you are American)

CoullPert Jul-20-2022

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The second sentence is correct because "What facinates me most. . .
"me" is the direct object and most is the adverb modifying to what degree the person is "fascinated."

eastmeadkl Jul-20-2022

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