Irregular Plurals of English Nouns

Regular Plural Nouns: Add -S

wall walls
ski skis
cat cats

Nouns Ending in -ch, -sh, -x, -s sounds: Add -ES

switch switches
brush brushes
box boxes
address addresses

Exception: When -CH is pronounced like K (stomach/stomachs)

Nouns Ending in -y: End with -IES

baby babies
army armies
puppy puppies

Nouns Ending in -F sound: Change to -VES

knife knives
wife wives
half halves
self selves
wolf wolves
leaf leaves

There are some exceptions, such as chef/chefs & roof/roofs

Nouns Ending in -O: -S or -ES
(depends on the word!)

Always –ES:

potato/tomato potatoes/tomatoes
hero heroes
torpedo torpedoes
echo echoes

 

Always –S:

stereo stereos
memo memos
solo solos
zoo zoos
studio studios

 

Some can be both!

ghetto ghettos ghettoes
mango mangos mangoes
motto mottos mottoes
tornado tornados tornadoes
tuxedo tuxedos tuxedoes
volcano volcanos volcanoes

Nouns that look plural, but take a singular verb:

news – The news was so depressing.

gymnastics – Gymnastics is great for getting in shape.

economics/mathematics – Economics is quite difficult.

Nouns that look singular, but take a plural verb:

pants – These pants are too small.

scissors – Where are the scissors?

glasses – When I last saw your glasses, they were on the table.

VERY Irregular Nouns

man men
woman women
child children
person people
tooth teeth
foot feet
vertebra vertebrae
mouse mice
goose geese

Nouns that do not change

  • one sheep, two sheep
  • one deer, two deer
  • one fish, two fish
  • one series, two series
  • one species, two species

Latin/Greek words: US –> I

alumnus/alumna alumni
cactus cacti
fungus fungi
nucleus nuclei
stimulus stimuli

Latin/Greek words: IS –> ES

analysis analyses
crisis crises
diagnosis diagnoses
hypothesis hypotheses
oasis oases

Latin/Greek Words: UM/ON –> A

bacterium bacteria
criterion criteria
curriculum curricula
datum data
millennium millennia
phenomenon phenomena

 

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