ESL – Irregular plural nouns

Here’s a little grammar lesson about irregular plural nouns. English is pretty weird sometimes.


8 November

Irregular plural nouns


In English, there are hundreds of nouns that don’t follow the standard rules for making a noun plural. There are no easy ways to remember these words, so they generally have to be memorized.

Some of the rarer irregular plurals are often misused, leading to the creation of variant forms, which usually encounter resistance at first but eventually make it into the language. For example, the plural of formula has traditionally been formulae, but formulas is now far more common, and few would call it incorrect.

Latinate plurals

Examples of some nouns retaining their plural forms from Latin and other languages:

singular plural
addendum addenda
alga algae
alumnus alumni
amoeba amoebae
antenna antennae
bacterium bacteria

-o becomes –oes

Examples of most nouns ending in –o adding an –s, but some take –es instead—for example:

singular plural
echo echoes
embargo embargoes

View original post 177 more words

Leave a comment

Filed under Teaching

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s