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Gender of nouns in German

A noun is a word used to name a person, an object, an abstract quality or a concept. German uses grammatical gender, where there is no obvious relationship that the gender of nouns conforms with their status.

 

Three genders in German:

All nouns are masculine, feminine or neuter. The nouns can be identified by the definite article which is different for each gender: "der" for masculine nouns, "die" for female and "das" for neuter nouns. Note that in the plural all three groups take the same article: "die".
In a normal dictionary the gender of a noun is usually indicated after the word. The most common abbreviations are: m (masculine), f (feminine), nt (neuter).

 

How to find the gender of a noun?:

by the the ending of a noun. There are acertain groups of nouns which have identical genders.

  • The following endings usually indicate that a noun is masculine: -er, -ig, -ismus, -ling, -or
  • Certain groups of nouns which are masculine: male persons - names of day, months and seasons - alcoholic drinks, brands of cars
  • The following endings usually indicate that a noun is feminine: -ei, -heit, -ie, ion, -keit, -tät, -schaft, -ung
  • Certain groups of nouns which are feminine: female persons - names of trees and flowers.
  • The following endings usually indicate that a noun is neuter: -chen, -lein, -ma, -ment, -um
  • Certain groups of nouns which are neuter: young persons - infinitives used as nouns - names of most metals - diminuitives.


by the compound name.

  • A word that is made up of more than one noun is called a compound noun. In this case the last noun defines the gender: m + f -> f, nt + f -> f.




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