Feminine

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Feminine (/femɪnɪn/) is a grammatical gender and noun class.

In English, a feminine noun always belongs to the personal gender, never the impersonal gender, and within the personal gender contrasts with masculine. Most people who are referred to using feminine nouns are biologically female, though many are not. Feminine nouns are also often used to refer to female animals. The feminine pronouns in English are "she", "her", "hers" and "herself" and all these third person singular, there are no equivalents for the third person plural or other grammatical persons, rather common gender pronouns are used instead.

Type Examples
Personal names Ruth, Samantha, Victoria
Nouns for describing people girl, lady, woman
Family-related nouns aunt, daughter, fiancée, mother, niece, sister, widower, wife
Descriptions of nationality, ethnicity, Dutchwoman, Englishwoman, Filipina, Frenchwoman, Irishwoman, Latina, Manxwoman, Scotswoman, Welshwoman, Yorkshirewoman
Gendered job titles actress, seamstress, waitress, compounds with -woman (e.g. policewoman, saleswoman, etc)
Aristocratic ranks baroness, countess, duchess, empress, marchioness, princess, queen, viscountess
Female animals bitch, cow, dam, doe, ewe, filly, hen, lioness, mare, queen, tigress, vixen


Gender-neutral language, which uses the common gender to cover feminine, masculine and non-binary is preferred by many especially in formal registers of contemporary English. This is less common however in historical English.

Unlike many other languages, English does not have gender concord whereby other words must agree with the gender of the noun.