Noun – What is it, concept, types, examples, sentences

We explain what a noun is and how this grammatical category can be classified. Also, the gender and number of the nouns.

Common nouns designate all the objects around us, such as balls.

What is a noun?

A noun is a grammatical category or kind of word used to name an object, subject, place, concept. For example: Juan, car, house, Buenos Aires.

Types of nouns

The noun can be classified according to what it names in:

  • Nouns. They name an object or subject in a concrete and particular way and are always capitalized. They are used to name: people (María, Juan), countries, cities and continents (Colombia, Montevideo, Asia), brands (Bimbo, Sony), organizations or institutions (Autonomous University of Barcelona, ​​Greenpeace), holidays (Christmas, Pesach) , musical groups (Nirvana, The Beatles), literary works (Don Quixote de la Mancha, La Gioconda).
  • Common nouns. They designate a person, animal or thing in a general way. For example: table, chair, cow, dog, mountain, love. Common nouns are always lowercase and are classified in different ways.

Common nouns are classified into:

  • Abstract nouns. They designate ideas, concepts and feelings that cannot be perceived by the senses. For example: freedom, happiness, hatred, compassion.
  • Concrete nouns. They name things and objects that can be perceived by the senses. For example: house, cat, tree, ball.

Concrete nouns are classified into:

  • Countable nouns. They can be numbered. For example: apple, table, friend.
  • Non-countable nouns. They cannot be numbered, but they can be measured. For example: water, sugar. In the latter case, you cannot say two sugars, but you can say a kilo of sugar. Uncountable nouns do not have a plural.

Countable nouns can be classified into:

  • Individual nouns. They name a particular being in the singular. For example: fish, dog.
  • Collective nouns. They name in a global or group way a set of people, animals, objects. For example: “fish” is individual and “school” is collective, since it refers to a group of fish.

Another classification that can be used within common nouns is to divide between primitive and derived nouns (they derive from another noun, such as “shoe shop”, “ice cream shop”, “bakery”). It is also possible to indicate whether a noun is simple or compound (in the case of “washing machine”, “umbrella” for example).

Gender and number of nouns

The nouns have:

  • Gender: female or male. Most feminine nouns end with the vowel -a while masculine nouns end with the vowel -o. That is why we can, for example, say cat and cat, dog and bitch. However, in some cases, the meaning is modified, such as basket and basket (object size changes).
  • Number: singular or plural. Some nouns are written the same in the singular and plural as: thorax, climax, cavities.

Most nouns can be modified from masculine to feminine and vice versa, as well as from singular to plural and vice versa. Some females are completely different from their male, such is the case of: horse and mare or actor and actress.

Examples of nouns


  • Own names: Mateo Olivero, Karina Sánchez, Osvaldo Cortez.
  • Urban places and spaces: Algeria, Tijuana, Oceania, Avenida del Libertador.
  • Organizations or institutions: World Health Organization, Club Deportivo Guadalajara.
  • Artworks: Las Meninas, One Hundred Years of Solitude.
  • Holidays: New Year, Ramadan, Day of the Dead.

Common nouns

Table, dog, mattress, car, drill, mother, plate, T-shirt, saxophone, rice, phone.

Abstract nouns

Love, passion, lust, fear, freedom, friendship, pain, anxiety, religion, justice, lies, compassion, time.

Concrete nouns

Earth, bottle, thumb, library, ball, sand, clock, brush, building, monkey, oil, candle, water.

Individual and collective nouns


Countable nouns

Book, ball, banana, boy, duck.

Non-countable nouns

Flour, sugar, blood, money, garbage, gasoline

Sentences with nouns

Place names are examples of proper nouns.


  • Mateo Olivero He is my mom’s cousin.
  • Yesterday I met on the street with Karina Sanchez.
  • They discharged Osvaldo cortez.
  • His sister went to live in Algeria.
  • On Tijuana we visit the Revolucion Avenue.
  • Oceania it is the smallest continent on the planet Land.
  • The gift shop is about Libertador Avenue.
  • The World Health Organization banned the use of the vaccine.
  • The Guadalajara Sports Club won the zonal championship.
  • Diego Velazquez is the author of Las Meninas.
  • Maria is reading One hundred years of loneliness of the Colombian writer, Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Common nouns

  • Sonia bought the desk on the shop of the village.
  • Me dog barks when he hears thunders.
  • The mattress Marisa did not enter the truck from moving.
  • The car load 50 liters from gasoline.
  • Can’t use the drill on Schedule nocturnal.
  • The mother Pedro visited him for Christmas.
  • Don’t throw away all the meal outside of plate!
  • The directory changed the design of the T shirt of the club.
  • Luis bought a saxophone secondhand.
  • You don’t need to buy more rice.
  • The telephone rang right at hour of the Dinner.

Abstract nouns

  • The book talks about the love and the passion between two lovers.
  • The lust is one of the seven sins capitals.
  • Do not get carried away only by him fear.
  • The Liberty it’s a wish of all men and women.
  • Nothing can break this friendship.
  • The pain in his leg it persists despite the medications they gave him.
  • His departure generated a lot of anxiety.
  • Michelangelo is faithful to his religion.
  • The court did Justice with Paola and ruled in her favor.
  • Pedro is not carried away by lies from your supervisor.
  • Had compassion with his neighbor and forgave him the debt.
  • It’s just a matter of weather.

Collective nouns

  • I kept the book you gave me in the library.
  • She was not intimidated and faced the pack that was chasing her.
  • A flock crossed the Andes at dawn.
  • The shoal toured the shores of the Dead Sea.
  • Solidarity does not recognize borders of countries in this continent.
  • His family and the Gomez are a clan.
  • Julian stayed awake contemplating the constellation.
  • They are ready? Time to learn the alphabet!

The noun within the sentence

The noun is the core of the noun phrase (set of words with a nucleus), mainly from the subject of the sentence.

Along with the nucleus we find: the direct modifiers (adjectives and articles), the indirect modifier (preposition plus substantive or substantive construction), the apposition (noun or substantive construction that clarifies the nucleus or repeats it) and the comparative construction (introduced by “as ” or which”).

For instance:

  • Juan, me brother, recently moved. (“Juan” is the nucleus of the subject and “brother” is the nucleus of the explanatory apposition)
  • The professor of the school teaches us very well. (“Teacher” is the nucleus of the subject and “school” is the nucleus of the indirect modifier)

In a sentence there may be one or more noun nuclei within a subject (simple or compound) and must agree with the conjugated verb of the predicate (singular or plural). The same happens with adjectives, which must agree with the noun in gender and number so that the cohesion of the sentence is correct.

For instance:

  • clear and Andrea they run every morning. (“Clara” and “Andrea” are the two nuclei of the composite subject)
  • The employees and the managers they met in the living room. (“Employees” and “managers” are the two nuclei of the composite subject)

In addition, the noun can be present in noun constructions of the predicate, within a direct object, indirect object, circumstantial, complement or predicative.

For instance:

  • We are preparing a surprise for Javier. (“Javier” is the nucleus of the indirect object and “surprise” is the nucleus of the direct object)
  • The show will be in the stage principal. (“Stage” is the nucleus of the circumstantial complement of place)
  • The mystery was discovered by the detective. (“Detective” is the core of the agent complement)

Nouns and adjectives

The adjective is a class of word that has the function of qualifying the noun. The adjective expresses characteristics or properties attributed to a noun and provides information about it.

Both are categories of words that are closely linked, since the noun names a thing (object, place, animal, person, emotion) and the adjective characterizes it. For example: The sea (noun) is deep (adjective). Noun and adjective must agree in gender and number.

Adjectives fall into two main categories:

  • Adjectives. They are those that detail characteristics or properties of the noun they qualify for, and can be specific or explanatory.
  • Determining adjectives. They indicate quantity, position or number of the noun, and can be demonstrative, indefinite and possessive.

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