Gender of Spanish Nouns
Nouns are words that are used to identify a person, place, thing or idea. Examples of nouns include "girl" (person), "Venezuela" (place), "house" (thing), and "freedom" (idea). In Spanish, nouns are either masculine or feminine. The following are examples of masculine and feminine nouns in Spanish. Listen to each noun, then repeat it out loud.
the child (boy)
the child (girl)
Nouns in Spanish are masculine or feminine to denote whether a living creature is male or female. You'll notice that masculine nouns end in "o" and feminine nouns end in "a". The English word "the" in Spanish also has a masculine form "el" as well as a feminine form "la". "el" and "la" are definite articles and usually proceed nouns. Definite articles in Spanish are both masculine and feminine to match the nouns they preceed. Click on each noun below, then repeat it out loud.
The cat (male)
The cat (female)
Nouns that do not denote living creatures are also masculine or feminine. Spanish nouns that end in -o are typically masculine, and nouns that end in -a are usually feminine. However, this isn't always the case. In many cases, you'll simply have to memorize the gender of a noun. Review the popular Spanish nouns below and pay attention to whether they're masculine or feminine. Listen to each noun, then repeat it out loud.
Some nouns have both a masculine and feminine form. Masculine nouns that end in a consonant often have a feminine form that ends in -a. Consider the following examples.
the doctor (male)
the doctor (female)
the professor (male)
the professor (female)
Some nouns in Spanish that refer to people are both masculine and feminine (without ending in -o or -a). The article (el or la) used for the noun indicates its gender. Consider the following examples.
the artist (male)
the artist (female)
the student (male)
the student (female)
Spanish nouns that end in -ción, -sión, -dad, -tad, -tud, -umbre are feminine. Consider the following examples.
Some Spanish nouns that end in -a are masculine. Consider the following examples.
Some Spanish nouns that end in -o are feminine. Consider the following examples.