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American Sign Language: "the"

The purpose of the word "the" is usually to identify or specify a particular noun.  ASL has a variety of ways to specify nouns and/or to identify particular nouns.

ASL doesn't use a specific sign for the word "the."  The right way to express the concept of "the" in ASL depends on your meaning. 

Note: Signed English does have a specific sign for "THE" but that sign is not commonly used by adult native Deaf signers. 

Here I'll share with you some of the more common ASL methods of specifying nouns or referring to particular nouns.

INDEXING / pointing: IT / HE / SHE / THERE / "the one that is right there" 

THERE: "that one there"

On first reference it helps to glance briefly at the object or place while pointing at it (if it is in view).

Also see: INDEXING
Also see: THIS

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