Hello, does anyone know some tips to understand whether a noun is masculine, feminine or neutral in Romanian? Thanks so much
Thank you very much! This was very useful!Hello ALyseeJazz,
There are some rules but there are also exceptions and only practice will help in the end. It's not as difficult like in German and you being Italian may have an advantage. In principle any noun (singular!) ending in ă(a)/e is feminine and if the singular form ends in a consonant it's masculine. The rule taught in school was too check by the plural form:
un băiat/doi băieţi -> masculine (un/doi)
o masă/două mese -> feminine (o/două)
un ou/două ouă -> neutral (un/două) [un picior/două picioare]
This is rather complicated if you don't speak well the language to be able to figure out what is natural, un/o, etc. Try using this very good dictionary resource, type in the word and you'll be able to figure out what kind of noun it is until you get the hang of it: dexonline.ro/resources (use the search window for looking up words; the link takes you to the Resources page, also very useful).
The University of Bucharest has this resource available on line, an ebook published by a reputed linguist, Narcisa Forăscu (in Romanian!): Genul Substantivelor.
Things will get complicated even more when it comes to plural. Here is good article, written in Romanian, which could help with plurals, depending on your level of understanding of the Romanian language: Pluralul substantivelor.
A very good resource for Romanian grammar, written in English: Romanian Grammar by Dana Cojocaru (look for a pdf version)