Portuguese Language and Culture
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Learn Portuguese for Free - An Interactive Portuguese Course for Students and Teachers
Lesson 1: Getting Started

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Plural forms of nouns

To obtain the plural forms of nouns, you can orientate yourself on the following rules:

If a word ends in a vowel (-a, -e, -i, -o or -u), simply add an -s to the end and voila! you have the plural form:

um restaurante, uns restaurantesa restaurant, many restaurants
uma praia, umas praiasa beach, many beaches
um carro, uns carrosa car, many cars
um estudante, uns estudantesa student, many students

You have probably noticed that the indefinite article 'um' and 'uma' become 'uns' and 'umas' in the plural. By the way: In English, there are no plural indefinite articles. For example, in order to say 'uns carros', we would simply use the translations 'many cars', 'some cars' or just 'cars'.

If a word ends in "-m", the plural form is formed by removing this final "-m" and replacing it by "-ns":

um jardim, uns jardinsa garden, many gardens
um homem, uns homensa man, many men

Similarly, if a noun ends in -l, the final -l is replaced by an -is for the plural forms. Also, in some cases, the vowel in front of the -is gets an accent:

um hotel, uns hotéisa hotel, many hotels
um jornal, uns jornaisa newspaper, many newspapers

Unfortunately there is no such simple rule for words that end in -ão or -ãe. Therefore, you will have to study and memorize the plural forms along with these words. The good thing is though, that there are not many of those words. Here are a few examples:

um pão, unsesa bread, many breads
uma ação, umas açõesan action, many actions
uma mãe, umas mãesa mother, many mothers
uma mão, umas mãosa hand, many hands

Based on the rules you have learned on the last page, tell us the correct plural forms of the following Portuguese nouns:

um cheque
uns cheques

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1) um centro
2) uma senhorita (woman)
3) um jardim
4) uma amiga (friend, female)
5) uma estação
6) um oceano

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