Explanations » A1 Grammar Explanations » Much, many, a lot of, a little, a few
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Grammar chart – much, many, a lot of, a little, a few, no, any, none

Grammar chart illustrating the use of quantifiers such as 'much', 'many', 'a lot of', 'little', 'few', 'no', 'any', and 'none' with countable and uncountable nouns.

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Much/many

Many for countable, much for uncountable in (?) (-)

We use much/many in negative sentences and questions. We use many before plural countable nouns and much before uncountable nouns. We don’t normally use them in affirmative sentences.

  • There isn’t much coffee in the jar.
  • Were there many people at the party?

How much/how many

We use how many + plural nouns and how much + uncountable nouns to ask about quantity. You can review countable and uncountable nouns here.

  • How many books did you read last semester?
  • How much coffee do you drink every day?

We can also say How much is it? to ask about the price of an item.

  • ‘How much is it?’ ‘It’s 43 pounds.’
  • ‘How much are the trousers?’ ‘They’re 58 pounds.’

 

A lot (of)

Before both countable and uncountable

We use a lot of before both plural countable and uncountable nouns to talk about a large quantity. We normally use a lot of in positive sentences.

  • She spends a lot of time watching TV.
  • We had lots of good moments together.

We can say quite a lot of to talk about medium quantity.

  • With my new job, I have quite a lot of free time

It is also possible to use a lot of in negative sentences and questions.

  • Do you eat a lot of sugar?
  • I don’t read a lot of books.

Of before noun; of at the end of sentence

We must always use a lot of including of before a noun. However, we can use a lot (without of) at the end of a sentence or in short answers.

  • ‘How many beers did you have?’ ‘I don’t know; I had a lot.’
  • I like her a lot.
  • ‘How much coffee did you have?’ ‘A lot.’

 

A few/a little

A few for countable; a little for uncountable

We use a few before plural countable nouns and a little before uncountable nouns in affirmative, negative and interrogative sentences to talk about a small quantity.

  • I have to do a few things this afternoon.
  • I always put a little milk in my tea.

Not many, not much

We can also use not many + plural countable or not muchuncountable nouns. The meaning is similar.

  • I don’t have to do many things this afternoon.
  • I don’t put much milk in my tea.

No/not…any/none

When we want to talk about zero quantity, we can use no + noun or not…any + noun. The meaning is the same.

  • I have no time today.
  • I don’t have any time today.

In short answers, we use none.

  • ‘How much time do you have?’ ‘None.’