Nouns in Hindi will fall into one of two genders: masculine or feminine. Many masculine nouns end in the vowel आ or ा and many feminine nouns end in the long vowel ई or ी , but there are exceptions to this rule. Usually, feminine words borrowed from Sanskrit end in the vowel आ or ा (for example, भाषा meaning "language," is a feminine noun) and the masculine words borrowed from Sanskrit end with the vowel अ but since the last vowel of all the words in Hindi are silent if they end in an अ, so all such borrowed words end in a consonant in Hindi (for example, the masculine word कर्म which is pronounced as "karma" in Sanskrit but pronounced "karm" in Hindi; the final अ vowel is silent).

There also are many loan words from languages like Persian, Turkish, Arabic, Portuguese, English into Hindi and very often there is no predictable rule or method to determine the gender. What gender sounds better with which word is how the genders are usually assigned for the loanwords. For example, the Arabic loan word आदमी, meaning "man," is a masculine noun but yet ends with an ी vowel.

List of Some Loanwords from Different Languages and their Genders edit

The languages out of which most loanwords are present in Hindi are Arabic, Persian, Portuguese and English.

Arabic edit

There is no particular logic that can be established here to predict the gender of the words.

  1. अजूबा, ajūbā masc. (Wonder, Marvel, Miracle)
  2. अफ़वाह, afvāh fem. (Rumour)
  3. अमन, aman, masc. (Peace)
  4. अमानत, amānat, fem. (Property)
  5. अरसा, arsā masc. (An interval of time, Period)
  6. अलविदा, alvidā masc. (Goodbye)
  7. कसर, kasar fem. (Shortcoming, Shortfall, Flaw, Fault, Lack of)
  8. औलाद, aulād fem. pl. (Offspring, Children)
  9. उसूल, usūl masc. (Rule)

Persian edit

It could be noted here (with a few exceptions) that many masculine words end in आ or ा but nothing conclusive can be said about the feminine words. It can be said that most words that end with िश are feminine.

  1. अंगूर, aṅgūr masc. (Grapes)
  2. अंदेशा, andeśā masc. (Suspision)
  3. अचार, acār masc. (Pickle)
  4. क़ैदी, kaidī masc. (Prisoner)
  5. कोशिश, kośiś fem. (Effort, Try)
  6. फ़रमाइश, farmāiś fem. (Request)
  7. ख़्वाहिश, xvāhiś fem. (Wish, Desire, Want)
  8. गुज़ारिश, guzāriś fem. (Request, Petition, Payment, Tribute, Explanation)
  9. सिफ़ारिश, sifāriś fem. (Recommendation, Endorsement

Suffixes edit

There are some borrowed suffixes from Persian to Hindi which when used with a word the gender of the word could be determined with surety.

-दार (-dār) edit

The Persian suffix word -दार, when added at the end of nouns, conveys the idea of possession, holding, bearing or having. The combined word either acts as a noun or an adjective. For examples, some words which form nouns after adding -दार are mentioned below. The addition of the suffix -दार makes the word a gender flexible word which means that the same word could be used to describe both feminine and masculine nouns. The gender of the following words would be assumed to be same as the subject or the object it describes.

  1. दावेदार, dāvedār (masc. or fem.) = दावे (claim) + दार = claimant, challenger.
  2. साझेदार, sājhedār (masc. or fem.) = साझे (associated)+ दार = partner, associate
  3. रिश्तेदार, riśtedār (masc. or fem.) = रिश्ते (relation) + दार = relative
  4. हिस्सेदार, hissedār (masc. or fem.) = हिस्से (part, contribution, share)+ दार = shareholder, partaker
  5. पहरेदार, pahredār (masc. or fem.) = पहरे (to guard) + दार = guard
  6. थानेदार, thānedār (masc. or fem.) = थाने (jail)+ दार = jailer, policeman
-दारी (-dārī) edit

The suffix -दार when changed to -दारी changes the meaning of the suffix which often is equivalent to Engish's -tion, -ship or -ness or -ing suffixes. These formed nouns are always guaranteed to be feminine.

  1. दावेदारी, dāvedārī (fem.) = दावे (claim) + दारी = claiming/claim ("claim-ship")
  2. साझेदारी, sājhedārī (fem.) = साझे (associated)+ दारी = partnership
  3. रिश्तेदारी, riśtedārī (fem.) = रिश्ते (relation) + दारी = kinship
  4. हिस्सेदारी, hissedārī (fem.) = हिस्से (part, contribution, share)+ दारी = partnership
  5. पहरेदारी, pahredārī (fem.) = पहरे (to guard) + दारी = guarding
  6. थानेदारी, thānedārī (fem.) = थाने (jail)+ दारी = jailing (the action of looking after a jail)

English edit

The most amount of loanwords in Hindi is from English. A huge amount of English words are very often used as the default word in Hindi. The English words although not having genders when used in the English language but in Hindi just as the rest of the words, are assigned either the masculine or the feminine gender. You will soon see that it is often much easier to identify which English words are feminine words than masculine in Hindi, but luckily most English words' genders which cannot usually be predicted will be masculine. A few examples of loanwords are mentioned below:

  1. अंकल, aṇkal (masc.) - Uncle
  2. आंटी, āṇṭī (fem.) - Aunty
  3. अफ़सर, afsar (masc. or fem.) - Officer
  4. अपील, apīl (fem.) - Appeal
  5. अमरीका, amrīkā (masc.) - America
  6. अल्बम, albam (masc.) - Album
  7. इंच, iñc (masc.) - Inch
  8. इंजन, iñjan (masc.) - Engine
  9. इंजीनियर, iñjīniyar (masc. or fem.) - Engineer
  10. इंटरफ़ेस, iṇṭarfes (masc.) - Interface
  11. इंटरव्यू, iṇṭarvyū (masc.)- Interview
  12. टीम, ṭīm (fem.) - Team
  13. इंडिया, iṇḍiyā (masc.) - India (Gender of 'India' depends on the context. "(Country) India" it's interpreted masculine, but "(Team) India" (cricket team) is interpreted feminine)
  14. इंस्पेक्टर, inspekṭar (masc. or fem.) - Inspector
  15. इग्ज़ाम, igzām (masc.) - Exam
  16. इमोजी, imojī (masc.) - Emoji
  17. ऐनिमे, ainime (masc.)- Anime
  18. कंक्रीट, kaṇkrīṭ (masc.) - Concrete
  19. कंप्यूटर, kampyūṭar (masc.) - Computer
  20. कप्तान, kaptān (masc.) - Captain
  21. कॉफ़ी, kôfī (fem.) - Coffee
  22. कोट, koṭ (masc.) - Coat
  23. कोटा, koṭā (masc.) - Quota
  24. क्रिकेट, krikeṭ (masc.) - Cricket
  25. गिलास, gilās (masc.) - Glass
  26. गे, ge (masc.)- Gay
  27. स्किल्स, skils (fem.) - Skills

An approximate logic which can be established is: most words which end in or have in their second-last position these following vowels: ई or ी or इ or ि, are interpreted as feminine words.

Suffixes edit

There are certain suffixes in English which when used in words would make the English words be interpreted as feminine in Hindi.

-ity edit

Al the English words ending -ity are always interpreted as feminine in Hindi.

  1. Serenity (fem.)
  2. Serendipity (fem.)
  3. Adaptability (fem.)
  4. Ability (fem.)
  5. Inability (fem.)
  6. Capability (fem.)
  7. Responsibility (fem.)
  8. Susceptibility (fem.)
  9. Respectability (fem.)
  10. Sentimentality (fem.)
  11. Intentionality (fem.)
  12. Toxicity (fem.)
  13. Intercommunity (fem.)
  14. Community (fem.)
  15. Liability (fem.)
-ing edit

Almost all English gerund nouns formed by adding the continuous tense suffix -ing to them could be interpreted as both masculine and feminine words depending on the context. Usually, when the word follows after a genitive case pronoun it is used as a feminine word but when it is without a pronoun preceding it (or maybe the pronoun is after the word ending in -ing), it is almost always interpreted as masculine. This phenomenon of "confused genders" happens not just for words of foreign origin but often also with pure Hindi feminine words in certain contexts. It depends on the position of words in the sentence (word-order) and also on the nuance of the sentence (Read the reference attached to know more about this phenomenon). [1]

  1. Dancing (masc. or fem.) [In some contexts it's used as feminine but masculine in others]
  2. Being (masc.)
  3. Checking (masc. or fem.)
  4. Covering (masc.)
  5. Playing (masc.)
  6. Drinking (masc.)
  7. Jogging (masc.)
  8. Skipping (masc. or fem.)
  9. Jumping (masc. or fem.)
  10. Imitating (masc.)
  11. Painting (fem.)
  12. Sanitising (masc.)
  13. Washing (masc.)
  14. Starting (masc. or fem.)


  • Racetrack के starting पर जाओ। ('Starting' is used as a masculine word here)
    • Go to the starting of the racetrack.
  • कहानी की starting क्या थी? ('Starting' is used as a feminine word here)
    • What was the starting of the story?
  • आपकी checking होगी अभी। ('checking' is used as a feminine word here)
    • Your checking will be done now.
  • Checking हो गया तुम्हारा? ('checking' is used as a masculine word here)
    • Is your checking done?
-tion edit

All the English nouns which are formed by the addition of the suffix -tion or just the -tion sound are almost always considered masculine in Hindi.

  1. Rotation (masc.)
  2. Plantation (masc.)
  3. Upgradation (masc.)
  4. PlayStation (masc.)
  5. Ionisation (masc.)
  6. Interpretation (masc.)
  7. Nitration (masc.)

Portuguese edit

Some very commonly used loanwords from Portuguese are as follows:

  1. अंग्रेज़, aṅgrez (masc.) - Englishman
  2. अंग्रेज़ी, aṇgrezī (fem.) - English
  3. अनानास, anānās (masc.) - Pineapple
  4. अलमारी, almārī (masc.) - Almira
  5. अस्पताल, aspatāl (masc.) - Hospital
  6. इस्त्री, istrī (masc.) - Iron
  7. गिरजा, girjā (masc.) - Church
  8. गोभी, gobhī (masc.) - Cabbage
  9. चाबी, cābī (fem.) - Key
  10. तौलिया, tauliyā (masc.) - Towel
  11. बोतल, botal (masc.) - Bottle
  12. बालटी, bālṭī (masc.) - Bucket
  13. साबुन, sābun (masc.) - Soap
  14. साया, sāyā (masc.) - Petticoat
  15. जनवरी, janvarī (masc.) - January
  16. फ़रवरी, farvarī (masc.) - February
  17. मार्च, mārc (masc.) - March
  18. अप्रैल, aprail (masc.) - April
  19. मई, maī (masc.) - March
  20. जून, jūn (masc.) - June
  21. जुलाई, julāī (masc.) - July
  22. अगस्त, agast (masc.) - August
  23. सितम्बर, sitambar (masc.) - September
  24. अक्तूबर, aktūbar (masc.) - October
  25. नवम्बर, navambar (masc.) - November
  26. दिसम्बर, disambar (masc.) - December

References edit

  1. Annie Montaut On the nature of the Hindi infinitive: History as an answer to its syntactic behavior? Page. 16