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A or An before “H”?

Judy Vorfeld

This is an heav­enly, his­tor­i­cal hotel. Really?

Things have changed. Language is ever chang­ing, includ­ing how to use “a” and “an” before a word begin­ning with “h.” “An his­tor­i­cal book” is no longer idiomatic in American English. Nor it is heavenly.

Before a pro­nounced “h,” the indef­i­nite arti­cle should be “a.” A hotel; a his­tor­i­cal. A heavenly.

Think of if this way: pre­cede a word begin­ning with a “breathy” h with an “a.” Not an “an.”


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