We use the term zero article when no article is used. Articles are not always necessary.

Zero article

Examples:

  • He travels to work by train.
  • Not: He travels to work by a/the train.
  • She loves taking photos of caterpillars.
  • Not: She loves taking photos of the caterpillars.

 

No article:

before names of materials

  • Gold is found in Australia.
  • Not: The gold is found in Australia.

before abstract nouns used in a general sense

  • Money cannot buy happiness.
  • Not: Money cannot buy the happiness.

before proper nouns

  • He is a fan of Michael Jackson.
  • Not: He is a fan of the Michael Jackson.
  • She gave birth to twins in June.
  • Not: She gave birth to twins in the June.

before illnesses

  • She came down with measles and had to stay in bed.
  • Not: She came down with the measles and had to stay in bed.

before the names of cities, states, countries, islands or mountains

  • India achieved independence in 1947.
  • Not: The India achieved independence in 1947.
  • Mount Everest is the world's highest mountain.
  • Not: The Mount Everest is the world's highest mountain.