Grammar Monster
Grammar Monster

What Is a Gender-specific Noun? (with Examples)

What Is a Gender-specific Noun? (with Examples)

A gender-specific noun refers specifically to a male or a female.

In English, the gender of most nouns is neuter. However, if a noun refers to something obviously male or female, then its gender will be masculine or feminine (as determined by the meaning).

When a noun's meaning makes its gender masculine or feminine, it is said to be a gender-specific noun.

Read more about gender.

Examples of Gender-specific Nouns

Here are some examples of gender-specific nouns:
  • actress / waitress / vixen / bitch / sow
  • (gender specific - female)

  • Dad / bull / uncle / drake / ram / boar / wether (a castrated male sheep or goat)
  • (gender specific - male)
These are not gender-specific nouns:
  • soldier / cat / whale / mouse
  • (not gender specific)

Interactive Test