English Nouns Are Not Masculine English Language Essay

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A noun is used to identify a parson or a thing. Nouns have many different kinds of meanings. They can be formed from other words -movement, intention, difference, kindness, security and landing. English nouns are not masculine, feminine or neuter like in other languages. For example most names of jobs, such as teacher, doctor, and writer are used both for men and women. But some nouns refer only to males and others only to females. For example some nouns indicating people's family relationships, such as father, brother and son and some indicating people's jobs such as waiter and policeman can only refer to males. In the same way mother, sister, daughter, policewoman, actress, waitress can only be used to refer to females.

Words that refer to women often end in "ess", e.g. actress, waitress, and hostess. Another ending is "woman" as in policewoman and needlewoman.

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Words ending in "man" are either used to refer only to men or to both men and women, e.g. a postman is a man, but a spokesman can be a man or a woman.

Some people use now words ending in "person", such as chairperson and spokesperson, instead of words ending in "man", in order to avoid appearing to refer specifically to a man.

Most nouns have two forms; the singular which is used to refer to one person or thing, and the plural form which is used to refer to more than one person or thing.

Countable nouns are individual objects, people, places that can be counted. A countable noun can be either singular - a flower, a blanket. - or plural - a few grapes, lots of houses.

Uncountable nouns are materials, concepts, information that are not individual objects and cannot be counted.

information, water, cheese, news

Uncountable nouns are always singular.

Some words in English are uncountable but in other languages they are considered countable e.g. fruit, information, money, furniture.

There are a number of nouns in English which refer to a group of people or things. These nouns are called collective nouns. When we use them, we use either a singular verb or a plural verb after them. We choose a singular verb when we think of the group as a single unit, and a plural verb if we think of the group as a number of individuals.

Common nouns name general items, not capitalized, unless at the beginning of a sentence, or in a title.

Proper nouns name specific items, they are the names that are given to a specific person, place or thing, start with capital letter

Concrete nouns -we use our senses to either touch, smell, hear, or taste them, they refer to physical things such as bag, clock, glass.

Abstract nouns things we cannot see, hear, touch, smell or taste, they refer to ideas and qualities, e.g. happiness, fear, anger.

Predicate nouns follow a form of the verb "to be" and rename the subject of a sentence.

The ing nouns- used to refer to an action, activity, or process in a general way. The ing noun has the same form as the present participle of a verb.

These nouns can be called: gerunds, verbal nouns, ing forms, or ing nouns.

It is sometimes difficult to distinguish an ing noun from a present participle, and it is usually not necessary to do so. However, there are times when it is clearly a noun, for example when it is the subject of a verb, the object of a verb, or the object of a preposition.

Because ing nouns refer to activities in a general way, they are usually uncountable nouns, that is, they only have one form, cannot be used with numbers, and do not usually have a determiner in front of them.

We often use an ing noun, because it is the only noun form available for certain verbs, such as eat, hear, go, come and bless. Whereas, other verbs have related nouns that are not ing nouns, for example see- sight, arrive-arrival, depart-departure.

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Some ing nouns which are related to verbs are countable nouns. They generally refer to the result of an action or process, or to an individual instance of it. The commonest ing nouns are: beginning, feeling, meeting, setting, being, building, drawing, meaning, suffering, offering, showing. There are nouns that end in "ing" but they are not gerunds e.g. evening or spring.

Compound nouns- A compound noun is a fixed expression which is made up of more than one word and which functions in the clause as a noun, some are written with hyphens instead of spaces between the words, e.g. bride-to-be, a brother-in-law. Some are written with either a hyphen or a space between the words. For example, both air-conditioner and air conditioner are widely used.

A few compound nouns which consist of more than two words are written partly with hyphens and partly with spaces, for example

one-parent family

Compound nouns can be singular, plural, countable, or uncountable.

Most compound nouns consist of two nouns, or an adjective and a noun. In some cases, meaning of the compound noun can be deceiving as it's not literal e.g. someone's "mother-tongue" is not the tongue of their mother but the language, they learn as a child.

Examples of compound nouns:

Fairy tale, driving license, T-shirt, bus stop, can opener

Nous can act as adjectives as in history teacher, or dog food. A noun as an adjective is invariable, i.e. history teacher- teachers, NOT histories teacher or histories teachers. The plural is on the real noun only.

In the same way, adjectives can work as nouns. For instance:

As Ellipses of Noun Phrases: Ellipsis is the shortening of a phrase. Adjectives can act as nouns and can be a subject, object, or complement in a sentence, e.g.

The rich, the poor, the old, the young-adjectives acting as nouns.

The possessive nouns indicate ownership, as in my dog's name, my father's job. We normally wouldn't say the job of my father, or the name of my dog. My dog's name and my father's job sound more natural in English.

There are also nouns describing quantity that accompany other nouns, e.g. a pair of socks, a dozen of roses, a box of chocolates, a packet of crisps, a cup of coffee, a glass/bottle of wine, a piece of cake, a slice of cheese.