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Learn French With Prof Josh, E08 – Gender of French Nouns Part 2

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Salut chers amis (salou sherzami)

Hello dear friends!

It is another beautiful day. I hope you’ve been able to master some of the examples on masculine gender of french nouns which we treated last time.

Do you still remember you were advised to make conscious effort to memorize each french nouns alongside its gender immediately you come across any? Good!

It is another episode of “Learn french with Profjosh”. So, I welcome you all to the class.

We are going to continue from where we stopped last time on gender of french nouns.

In case you missed the PART 1 of this lesson, click HERE

Today, I will be guiding you through how you can recognize a feminine noun in french.

french nouns

Gender of french nouns

Just as the masculine nouns take the small variable “Le” so also the feminine nouns take the small variable “la”.

Although it can be ” l’ ” in some cases where the noun begins with a vowel or a silent H or “Les” in cases where the noun is a plural noun (applicable to both “Le” and “la”).

This will be discussed better under “Articles”.

Don’t forget, this is not a set of rules to follow but just a guide to recognizing the gender of french nouns with a bit of ease.

1. Names of persons or animals of female sex are feminine nouns.


¤ la mère – Mother

¤ la soeur – Sister

¤ la poule – Hen

¤ la fille – Girl/Daughter

2. Countries that have “e” as their ending are féminine nouns.


¤ la France – France

¤ la Chine – China

¤ la Suisse – Switzerland

¤ la Côte-d’Ivoire – Ivory coast

¤ la Belgique – Belgium

Note: Mozambique (Mozambic), Zimbabwe and Mexique (Mexico) do not agree with this as they take the small variable “le” instead. So, we can say they are exceptions.

3. Most names of fruits are féminine nouns.


¤ la pomme – Apple

¤ la mangue – Mango

¤ la banane – Banana

¤ la goyave – Guava

¤ la poire – Pear

4. Science subjects are féminine nouns.


¤ la biologie – Biology

¤ la mathématique – Mathematics

¤ la statistique – Statistics

5. Compound words made with “mi-” are féminine.


¤ la mi-temps – Half-time

¤ la mi-septembre – Mid-septembre

¤ la mi-hauteur – Mid-height

6. The following are known as natural féminine nouns even when they stand for male persons.

¤ la personne – person

¤ la victime – victim

¤ la vedette – star (as in star artist)

We’ve come to the end of our lesson on gender of French nouns

Don’t forget, this is just a guide to recognizing masculine and feminine nouns in French language.

It is therefore expedient here to state that the ending of nouns can also be used to determine the gender of French nouns most especially for inanimate objects.

Even if the gender of inanimate objects remains arbitrary in French, it is possible in some certain cases to be able to guess correctly their gender.

In such cases, the ending of the noun can give a clear clue on the gender of the noun (mostly for inanimate nouns).

For further reading and examples, do well to follow this link HERE and see how to know the gender of inanimate objects by their endings.

Don’t forget to learn and memorize the exceptions.

Till we meet again to discuss “French articles”, do not stop learning and increasing in knowledge

Bonne journée (bornjoornay)- have a nice day.


Prof Josh

Prof Josh

Awodirepo Olabayo Joshua, popularly called Profjosh, is a native of Osun state Nigeria, a graduate of French Language and an alumnus of the University of Ibadan, a translator and interpreter (English-French/ French-English), a French language tutor and poem/short stories writer.

Prof Josh works with the OIPLC, Organisation Internationale pour la Promotion des Langues et la Culture an organisation that teaches French, you could check it out if you’re interested, click HERE


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  1. Pingback: Learn French With Prof Josh, E09 - French Articles (Definite Article) - LUYIS UPDATES

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