Brief introduction to Spanish nouns, including masculine and feminine nouns in Spanish
Having learned about the articles that reflect a noun’s gender, it’s time to learn about the words that drive those articles. It is important to learn a noun’s gender when learning the noun, because the gender affects more than just the article. This does make memorization a little trickier because you should learn more than just the word and its pronunciation.
There are a few things that are used in sentences to identify a noun’s gender, and help to build your vocabulary.
Nearly every Spanish word that ends with the letter o is masculine. When indicating a person, the noun will generally end in o to indicate the male gender.
el amigo male friend
el cocinero male cook
Nearly every Spanish word that ends with the letters “a” or “d” is feminine. There are also a few letter combinations that typically indicate a noun is feminine: -ión, -dad, -tad, and -umbre.
When indicating a person, the noun will usually end with an “a” to indicate a female.
la amiga female friend
la cocinera female cook
la profesora female professor
la autora female cook
Naturally, there are exceptions to these basic rules. The following is a short list of the most common exceptions – ones you are likely to use and should memorize.
Hand la mano feminine
Day el día masculine
Problem el problema masculine
System el sistema masculine
To indicate more than one of anything, in most cases you should simply add an “s” to the end of the noun; add “es”when the noun ends in a consonant. This is true regardless of the gender of the noun. However, keep in mind that plural nouns do have plural articles. El becomes los; la becomes las.
los amigos the male friends
las amigas the female friends
los cocineros the male cooks
las cocineras the female cooks
los profesores the male teachers
las profesoras the female professors
los autores the male writers
las autoras the female writers
las manos the hands
los días the days
los problemas the problems
los sistemas the systems