Re: A or An

Subject: Re: A or An
From: LaVonna Funkhouser <lffunkhouser -at- HALNET -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 22 Sep 1994 13:05:40 -0500

This is just the sort of thing the Chicago Manual of
Style is good for. (It's not perfect, but it is good
for some things!)

Uncertainty often arises concerning the proper choice of the
indefinate article before an acronym. ... (sentences backing
up what you already know--you should base it on the pronunciation)
Rarely is the acronym read as though all of the words were
spelled out. If, as is usually the case, the acronym is treated
as a series of lettrs, the choice of the aritcle depends onthe
pronunciation of the first letter:

an NAACP position
a TVA power station

---end quotation

In your case, I'd use "an RDBMS."

lffunkhouser -at- halnet -dot- com

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