The German Gender – der, die oder das?

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What is the German Gender? (Genus)?

The Gender indicates the sex of the noun, that is, whether it is Masculine (der), Feminine (die), or Neutral (das). In a dictionary you will find the following abbreviations: M = masculine, F = feminine, N = neutral.


  • der Mann“
  • die Frau“
  • das Kind“
  • das Baby“
  • die Flasche“
  • der Eimer“

Which words have a Gender?

Nouns (Nomen/Substantive) have a gender and therefore get an Article.

Hint: These are the words you have to capitalize, even if they are not at the beginning of the sentence!

How do we determine the Gender?

The most important rule:

There is no universal rule that works in every situation. In German, you can't tell the gender just by looking at the noun. Always learn the article along with the noun!

(Use my vocabulary list sample to prevent difficulties in the future.)

There are no rules, But: There are specific characteristics of the noun that can help you determine the German Gender. These are related to the meaning or the ending of the noun.

Free Download: Noun Vocabulary List Template for German Genders

Your vocabulary list should include more than just the simple translation. A noun always includes the article and therefore the genus, the plural form and of course an example sentence. If you take the trouble to include this information in your list, you will be able to remember everything much easier and you won't have any problems with the genus and the German articles later on!

German Gender: Rules for Masculine Nouns (der):

German Gender / Genus masculine nouns

More endings that (usually!) indicate Masculine nouns: -ig, -ent, -ier, -ist, -or, -ör, -iker, -ast, -eur.

These are the most important ones, but it's still the best to always learn the article together with the meaning of the word.

German Gender: Rules for Feminine Nouns (die):

German Gender / Genus feminine nouns

More endings that (usually) indicate Feminine nouns: -anz, -ik, -tät, -ur, -ei, -sis, -ive, -ade.

German Gender: Rules for Neutral Nouns (das):

German Gender / Genus neuter nouns

More endings that (usually) indicate Neuter nouns: -tel, -in, -tum, -um, -o, -ma, -ett, 

Gender of Compound Nouns

If a noun contains multiple other words that are getting compound, the last noun determines the gender of the compound word.


  • der Schrank + die Tür   = die Schranktür
  • das Bett + die Decke   = die Bettdecke
  • die Hand + das Tuch  = das Handtuch

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Gender of Plural Nouns


There is only one form in Plural.

  • „der Ball“ ⇒ „die Bälle"
  • „die Frau“ ⇒ „die Frauen"
  • „das Haus“ ⇒ „die Häuser"

Related Topics:

Entire lesson in German only: Genus

Nouns are usually placed together with Artikeln (Articles) and Adjektiven (Adjectives).

You can find an overview of all topics under German Grammar.

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