Nouns are words used to refer or identify people, animals, qualities, things, places, and ideas. Majority of nouns have no gender with only a few easily detectable exceptions we will explore here. In this page, we will summarize the main noun rules, types, and ways to form them.
|People||Inna bought this last night.|
|Animal||Cats are interesting creatures.|
|Qualities||This champagne is of the highest quality.|
|Things||Put it on the table.|
|Places||Let's go to New York soon!|
|Ideas||Breaking the rules is bad.|
While in many other languages gender distinctions are obligatory for grammatical correctness for a majority of the English nouns there is no distinction between them. However, there are few exceptions of nouns that can only identify a male, female or neutral gender.
|Nephew||Niece||Child of your brother/sister|
Without prior practice or knowledge of the English language, it might be harder to identify nouns or form different versions of them. Through the use of prefixes and suffixes, one can easily identify them in a text.
|Re-||When something repeats||Re-examination|
|Anti-||When something is against||Antidote, antihero|
|Pre-||When something was in the past||Prehistory, predetermination|
|Mis-||When something is wrong or there's a mistake||Miscommunication, misuse|
|Co-||When there is a union between things||Co-owner, cooperation|
|Under-||When something is not enough||Undervalue, understatement|
|Out-||When something is more or higher than other||Outperformance|
|Inter-||When something is between things||Interface, interaction|
|Over-||When something is too much||Overbooking|
|Trans-||When something crosses or goes above||Transatlantic, transparent|
While these prefixes are very commonly used there are many more used to form nouns.
Suffixes are also an extremely helpful way to form nouns to describe professions, people, emotions, states.
The ones used to determine professions are the suffixes "-er", "-or" and "-eer" .
The ones tused to specify or describe a type of person are the suffixes, - "ist", "-ster", and "-ee".
|-ism||To talk about policies, doctrines||Nationalism, totalitarianism|
|-age||To form abstract nouns, much variability||Mileage, bondage, wreckage|
|-ness||To talk about a state or quality||Happiness, darkness|
|-hood||To talk about a collective||Motherhood, neighborhood|
|-ship||To indicate a skill, state or rank||Relationship, leadership|
|-ry||To turn a verb into a noun||Robbery, bakery|
|-ment||To turn an action into noun||Development, acknowledgment|
Singular nouns are used to refer or identify only one person, animal, quality, thing, place, or an idea. They provide the stem based on which a plural noun can be formed. Through the use of several prefixes and suffixes, most of the plural nouns are formed with the presence of few exceptions and irregular nouns. For the full list visit our lesson page.
Countable nouns are used for words that can be counted. They can easily be identified by the determiners placed before them. Uncountable nouns are used for words that can't be counted through the use of numbers and generally are seen as a whole. Determiners and articles help us identify the type of measurement used for the noun.
Common nouns are non-capitalized generic nouns. The only time they are written with a capital letter is if they are at the beginning of the sentence. Proper nouns are used to refer to something very specific that can stand on it's own and are always capitalized.
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