Noun: the category of gender

The word “noun” derives from the Latin nomen meaning “name”, and a traditional definition of nouns is that they are all and only those expressions that refer to a person, place, thing, event, substance, quality or idea. They serve as the subject or object of a verb, and the object of a preposition.

Nouns can be a subject or an object of a verb, can be modified by an adjective and can take an article or determiner.
NOUN GENDER- A classification of nouns, primarily according to sex; and secondarily according to some fancied or imputed quality associated with sex.

Unlike the Romance languages (such as French, Spanish, and Italian), English has three genders for nouns and pronouns: masculine, feminine, and neuter. Generally, the English language uses natural gender rather than grammatical gender — that is, the gender of a word is usually based on its biology

(so there is little need to remember whether a word is masculine or feminine).

A noun that refers to something with male sexual organs is masculine, a noun that refers to something with female sexual organs is feminine and most other nouns are neuter by default. There was a time when you could use the masculine gender by default when you did not know a person’s natural gender, but very few people accept this usage any longer. There are, moreover, a few tricky points. First, you may refer to all animals in the neuter gender, or you may refer to them by their natural gender:
Neuter: What a beautiful dog! Does it bite?
Natural Gender: What a beautiful dog! Does she bite?

Second, You usually assign mythical beings (such as gods) to a natural gender, even if you do not believe that the beings have actual sexual organs: God is great. God is good. Let us thank her for our food.
Finally, people sometimes assign natural gender to inanimate objects, especially if they live or work closely with them. When engineers were mostly men, for example,

they tended to refer to large machines in the feminine: She is a fine ship.

In general there is no distinction between masculine, feminine and neuter in English nouns. However, gender is sometimes shown by different forms or different words.
Examples: Different words: Masculine- man, father, uncle, boy, husband; Feminine- woman, mother, aunt,  girl,  wife. Different forms: Masculine- actor, prince, hero, waiter, widower; Feminine- actress, princess, heroine, waitress.

Some nouns can be used for either a masculine or a feminine subject. Examples: cousin, teenager, teacher, doctor, cook, student, parent, friend, relation, colleague, partner, leader.
Mary is a doctor. She is a doctor . Arthur is my cousin. He is my cousin.

It is possible to make the distinction by adding the words ‘male’ or ‘female’. Example: a female student; a male cousin For professions, we can add the word ‘woman’. Example: a woman doctor; a woman journalist. In some cases nouns describing things are given gender. Examples: I love my car. She (the car) is my greatest passion.  France is popular with her (France’s) neighbours at the moment.




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