Gender of nouns ending in -umbre, -ión, -dad, -tad, -tis and -sis and their plural

Most nouns ending in -umbre, -ión, -dad, -tad, -sis and -tis are feminine in Spanish.

Have a look and listen to these examples:

Necesito saber la verdad.
I need to know the truth.

La relación con mi madre es difícil.
The relationship with my mother is difficult.

La gente no tiene mucha libertad en ese país.
People don't have much freedom in that country.

La educación en este colegio es excelente.
The education in this school is outstanding.

Nuestros amigos están entre la muchedumbre.
Our friends are among the crowd.

Estados Unidos pasó por una crisis económica en los años 20.
The U.S.A went through an economic crisis in the twenties.

El médico dice que tengo una otitis grave.
The doctor says that I have acute otitis.

Remember that articles and adjectives must agree with these feminine nouns.

There are some exceptions to this rule, for example:

  • el avión (the plane) not la avión
  • el camión (the lorry) not la camión
  • el análisis (the analysis) not la análisis
  • el guión  (the script) not la guión

Forming the plural

To form the plural of these feminine nouns simply add -es, except for nouns ending in -tis or -sis which keep the same form in singular and plural.

Have a look and listen to these examples: 

Mis dos canciones preferidas son del mismo grupo.
My two favourite songs are by the same band.

Algunas ciudades españolas son bastante modernas.
Some Spanish cities are quite modern.

Now look at this example for words ending -tis or -sis:

Javier ha hecho una tesis sobre un tema difícil de biología.
Javier has written a dissertation about a difficult topic in biology.

Algunos alumnos han presentado sus tesis esta mañana.
Some students gave a presentation on their dissertations this morning.

Learn more about these related Spanish grammar topics

Examples and resources

La gente no tiene mucha libertad en ese país.
People don't have much freedom in that country.


Javier ha hecho una tesis sobre un tema difícil de biología.
Javier has written a dissertation about a difficult topic in biology.


Algunas ciudades españolas son bastante modernas.
Some Spanish cities are quite modern.


El médico dice que tengo una otitis grave.
The doctor says that I have acute otitis.


Nuestros amigos están entre la muchedumbre.
Our friends are among the crowd.


La educación en este colegio es excelente.
The education in this school is outstanding.


Necesito saber la verdad.
I need to know the truth.


Algunos alumnos han presentado sus tesis esta mañana.
Some students gave a presentation on their dissertations this morning.


Mis dos canciones preferidas son del mismo grupo.
My two favourite songs are by the same band.


La relación con mi madre es difícil.
The relationship with my mother is difficult.


Estados Unidos pasó por una crisis económica en los años 20.
The U.S.A went through an economic crisis in the twenties.


Q&A

Michael

Kwiziq community member

13 December 2017

1 reply

Why not include nouns ending in -tud which is often cited in various sources as usually feminine.

Inma

Kwiziq language super star

13 December 2017

13/12/17

Hola Michael We will be adding more lessons dealing with gender and we will include nouns ending in -tud and-ía for example, as well. Gracias.

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