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Nouns: Gender

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A noun that denotes a male is said to be of the masculine gender for example:

Nouns like boy, man, brother, father etc. is of the masculine gender.

A noun that denotes a female is said to be of the feminine gender for example:

Nouns like girl, woman, sister, mother etc. is of the feminine gender.

A noun that denotes both a female and a male is said to be of the common gender for example:

Nouns like baby, child, parent, teacher, pupil etc. is of the common gender.

A noun that denotes a non living thing is said to be of the neuter gender (the word neuter means neither, that is neither male nor female) for example:

Nouns like book, pen, chair, car, wood, gold etc. is of the neuter gender.

Formation of the feminine nouns

There are three ways of forming the feminine of nouns:

Rule (1) By adding – ess to the masculine, for example: Author – Authoress

Sometimes the spelling of the words may have to be altered slightly before adding the- ess, for example: Actor- Actress

Rule (2) By using an entirely different word, for example: Boy- Girl

Rule (3) Sometimes a last word or the end word which tells about the gender of any word is changed only, for example: Grandfather – Grandmother

Sample Usage

Example of Rule (1)

Governor – Governess
Hunter – Huntress
Waiter – Waitress
Host – Hostess
Poet – Poetess

Example of Rule (2)

Lord – lady
Stag – Hind
Fox –Vixen
Horse – Mare
King- Queen

Example of Rule (3)

Peacock – Peahen
Stepson – Stepdaughter
He-Bear – She Bear
Landlord – Landlady
Man-servant – Maid- servant

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