The world's premier FREE website for learners and teachers of English


It's not easy to describe a noun. In simple terms, nouns are "things" (and verbs are "actions"). Like food. Food (n) is something you eat (v). Or happiness. Happiness (n) is something you want (v). Or human being. A human being (n) is something you are (v).

These pages explain more about the grammar of nouns and offer example sentences, quizzes and songs.

What is a Noun?

Types of Nouns
Common nouns and proper nouns, concrete nouns and abstract nouns, countable and uncountable, collective nouns, compound nouns

Countable Nouns and Uncountable Nouns
Why do some nouns have no plural?
dog/dogs, rice, hair(s)

Proper Nouns
Your name is a "proper noun". Do we say "Atlantic Ocean" or "the Atlantic Ocean"? Should I write "february" or "February"?
Shirley, Mr Jeckyll, Thailand, April, Sony

Adding 's or ' to show possession or ownership
John's car, my parents' house

Noun as Adjective
Sometimes we use a noun to describe another noun. In that case, the first noun is "acting as" an adjective.
love story, tooth-brush, bathroom

Compound Nouns
A compound noun is a noun that is made with two or more words.
tennis shoe, six-pack, bedroom