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Kevin Marin
What's the difference between "a few" and "few"?
Feb 12, 2018 5:09 PM
Comments · 8

"A few" means "some" in the sense of "not zero".  For example:

Have all the guests gone home?    No, there are a few people left.

Are the tickets all sold out?            No, there are still a few that haven't been sold.


"Few" means "not many".

In spite of the advertising campaign, few people bought the product.

He was a lonely man with no family and few friends.

Compare this last sentence with this:

Do you think that John is lonely?    I think he's fine. He has a few friends.

Can you seen the difference?

He has few friends is negative : it means that he doesn't have many friends, and so he's lonely.

He has a few friends is positive: it means that has some friends and so he isn't completely alone.

Likewise:

I have few problems is a good thing: it means that I don't have many problems.

I have a few problems is a bad thing: it means that that I have a number of problems.

I hope that all makes sense!

 

February 12, 2018

A few means a small number of something: three or four, maybe five

Few means "not many" or "almost none" and emphasizes the lack of something.


I have had a few problems with my car.  (Some things have gone wrong, but not many.  But perhaps I am unhappy.)

I have had few problems with my car.   (My car has had almost no problems.  I am happy.)



February 12, 2018

Few means only a small number.

A few means some. 

February 12, 2018
"a few" (positive) means "a bit but enough for smth".
For example: "We have a few money" i. e. We have a little money but we can satisfy bare necessities.
"Few" (negative),  on the other way round, means "very little"
For example: "I have few friends" i. e. I almost haven't got any friends. 
:) 
February 12, 2018

Few men know the meaning of respect

There once was a man from Japan who had a pan in his hand

Quite a few people got the answer correct

Very few people are coming tonight because Real Madrid is playing Barca.....  Of course Barca is going to win  :) 

February 12, 2018
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Kevin Marin
Language Skills
English, Spanish
Learning Language
English