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French grammar - Plural nouns - exceptions

Plural nouns - exceptions

While adding an s to a noun to form the plural is the general rule, there are several exceptions:

words ending in -eu, -au, and -eau - add an -x instead of an -s.

words ending in -al and many ending in -ail - remove the l (and the -i- if there is one) and add -ux.

many words ending in -ou - add an -x instead of an -s.

words that end in -s, -z, or -x do not change at all the singular and plural forms are the same.

the plural of œil (eye) is yeux (eyes), which is the only highly irregular plural noun in French.

Les jeux dans les cartons.
The games in the (cardboard) boxes.

le jeules jeux : -eu ending ⇒ add -x

jeu (m) means 'game'

carton (m) means 'cardboard box'

Les oiseaux dans les arbres.
The birds in the trees.

l'oiseaules oiseaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

oiseau (m) means 'bird'

Les gâteaux dans la boulangerie.
The cakes in the bakery.

le gâteaules gâteaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

boulangerie (f) means 'bakery'

Les morceaux sur la table.
The pieces on the table.

le morceaules morceaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

morceau (m) means 'piece' or 'bit'

Les bateaux dans le port.
The boats in the harbor.

le bateaules bateaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

bateau (m) means 'boat'

port (m) means 'port' or 'harbour'

Les chapeaux sur le banc.
The hats on the bench.

le chapeaules chapeaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

chapeau (m) means 'hat'

banc (m) means 'bench'

Les cadeaux dans le sac.
The gifts in the bag.

le cadeaules cadeaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

cadeau (m) means 'gift' or 'present'

Les manteaux dans l'armoire.
The coats in the wardrobe.

le manteaules manteaux : -eau ending ⇒ add -x

manteau (m) means 'coat'

armoire (f) means 'wardrobe'

Les chevaux dans le pré.
The horses in the field.

le chevalles chevaux : -al ending ⇒ -aux

cheval (m) means 'horse'

pré (m) means 'field' or 'meadow'

Les journaux sur l'étagère.
The newspapers on the shelf.

le journalles journaux : -al ending ⇒ -aux

journal (m) means newspaper

étagère (f) means 'shelf'

Les animaux dans le zoo.
The animals in the zoo.

l'animalles animaux : -al ending ⇒ -aux

animal (m) means 'animal'

zoo (m) means 'zoo'

Les travaux dans la rue.
The works on the road.

le travailles travaux : -ail ending ⇒ -aux

travail (m) means 'work' or 'job'

Les bijoux sur le plateau.
The jewels on the tray.

le bijoules bijoux : -ou ending ⇒ add -x

bijou (m) means 'jewel'

plateau (m) means 'tray' or 'platter' or 'plateau'

La douleur dans les genoux.
The pain in the knees.

le genoules genoux : -ou ending ⇒ add -x

genou (m) means 'knee'

douleur (f) means 'pain'

Les croix dans l'église.
The crosses in the church.

la croixles croix : -x ending doesn't change

croix (f) means 'cross'

église (f) means 'church'

Les nez sur les visages.
The noses on the faces.

le nezles nez : -z ending doesn't change

nez (m) means 'nose'

visage (f) means 'face'

Les œufs dans la boîte.
The eggs in the box.

l'œufles œufs : the f becomes silent


the f becomes silent

œuf (m) means 'egg'

Tout le monde a deux yeux.
Everyone has two eyes.

l'œilles yeux : the only highly irregular plural in French

œil (m) means 'eye'

tout le monde means 'everyone' (Literally 'all the world')