2-05-01 GÉNERO MASCULINO, FEMENINO Y NEUTRO – The gender of nouns

 

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The gender of nouns

GENDER
Masculine Femenine Neuter
People, animals sor things of this gender People, animals or things of this gender Abstract qualities and concepts without gender. They are preceded by the article “lo”

  • Some nouns that frequently describe people and animals, they use different forms for the feminine and the masculine. This type of nouns are called as heterónimos (heteronyms): padre-madre, hombre-mujer, caballo-yegua, yerno-nuera, toro-vaca, gallo-gallina, etc.
  • The nouns that describe objects, elements, feelings, activities, that is to say, sexless realities, they have a gender mark (masculine or feminine) but they do not change.

By a shortening: la foto, la moto

MASCULINE FEMENINE
Article El/los Un/uno La/las Una/unas
Nouns In a specific way, are masculine the names of: :
Los ríos, los mares, los montes (the rivers, the seas, the hills): el río Tajo
Los números (the numbers): el treinta
Los colores (the colours): el azul
Los días de la semana (the days of the week): el lunes
Los meses del año (the months of a year): junio es caluroso
In a specific way, are feminine the names of :
Las islas (the islands): las Canarias
Las letras del alfabeto (the letters of the alphabet): la hache
Las ciencias (the sciences): la Biología
Ending Usually, are masculine the nouns the end in: -o, -e, -aje or consonant (-n, -r): el maestro, el pie, el paje, el capitán y el calor Usually, are feminine the nouns the end in -a , -ción, -sión, -d: la hermana, la canción, la decisión y la libertad
Demonyms 
With an : -o ending italia-no, ruma-no y amerca-no.
With an -es -is ending: ingl-és
Demonyms
In the feminine the -o is replaced by an -a or if it ends in consonant an -a is added: italian-a, ruman-a, american-a, ingles-a
Masculine nouns that end in -a:el día
Some nouns that end in-ema:el tema y el problema
Feminine nouns that end in o: la mano y la radio
Some feminine nouns that begin by -a or -ha use the article in the sigular form but they are feminine nouns: el alma (las almas), el alba (las albas), el hacha (las hachas)
Heteronyms Caballo
Toro
Yegua
Vaca
  • The nouns with the -ista and -nte endings are feminine and also masculine.
  • There are common nouns regarding the gender that need the determiner in order to specify the gender of the person to whom they make reference: el / la estudiante, el/la periodista, el/la electricista, but in the cases as el/la médica it is better to use the masculine form for both of them. It happens the same with certain demonyms as el/la hindú (de la India)

 

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