MYTUTOR SUBJECT ANSWERS

666 views

How do I know whether a word is masculine or feminine?

In French it is often essential to know what gender a particular word is in order to be able to construct a sentence effectively and without errors. 

However, it is not always immediately clear which words belong to which gender. 

Here are some general rules that will help you to avoid making mistakes and construct accurate sentences.

1. If a noun refers to a male person it will be masculine, if it refers to a female person it will be feminine

2. Nouns with these endings will (generally) be masculine:

  • -age
  • -ment
  • -il-ail-eil-ueil
  •  (but not -té)
  • -eau and -ou
  • -ème-ège
  • -i-at-et and -ot
  • -er
  • -oir
  • -isme
  • -ing
  • -ard

 

3. Nouns with these endings will (generally) be feminine: 

  • -tion-sion and -son
  • -ure
  • -ude-ade
  • -ée
  • -té
  • -ière
  • Consonant followed by -ie
  • -euse
  • -ance-ence
  • Most other endings consisting of Vowel + Consonant + e-ine-ise-alle-elle-esse-ette etc

 

Although all these endings can seem overwhelming at first, take your time and remember the most common ones for each gender:

-age, and -ment for masculine nouns 

-tion, -sion, -son for feminine nouns

After a while you will start to get a feel for which words belong to which gender and it will become easier to recognise them. 

Marco S. GCSE French tutor, A Level French tutor, GCSE Italian tutor,...

2 years ago

Answered by Marco, an A Level French tutor with MyTutor


Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist

91 SUBJECT SPECIALISTS

£20 /hr

Zahra S.

Degree: Modern and Medieval Languages (Bachelors) - Cambridge University

Subjects offered:French, Spanish+ 3 more

French
Spanish
Italian
-Personal Statements-
-Oxbridge Preparation-

“Hi! I'm Zahra and I'm currently studying French and Spanish at the University of Cambridge. ”

£20 /hr

Emily B.

Degree: Modern and Medieval Languages (French and Spanish) (Bachelors) - Cambridge University

Subjects offered:French, Maths+ 1 more

French
Maths
Chemistry

“Hi! I'm Emily and I'm studying languages at Cambridge University. I want to pass on my love for my subject and help you succeed in your exams!”

£20 /hr

Marina M.

Degree: Combined Honours in Social Sciences (International Relations and French) (Bachelors) - Durham University

Subjects offered:French, Spanish

French
Spanish

“Spanish, reading French, approachable and motivated to help students enjoy languages and succeed in them.”

MyTutor guarantee

About the author

Marco S.

Currently unavailable: for regular students

Degree: French & Italian (Bachelors) - Bristol University

Subjects offered:French, Italian+ 1 more

French
Italian
English Literature

“2nd Year studying French and Italian at Bristol, looking to bring enthusiasm and energy to tutoring those needing help in GCSE and A-level along with English Lit GCSE. ”

MyTutor guarantee

You may also like...

Other A Level French questions

When is the subjunctive required?

When do I use an indirect object pronoun?

Why do past participles that take 'avoir' sometimes agree with the noun?

When would I use the subjunctive?

View A Level French tutors

We use cookies to improve your site experience. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss

mtw:mercury1:status:ok