Singular nouns are nouns that are used when we’re talking about only one individual person, one place, one thing, or one idea. Singular nouns are used in singular forms.

Examples:

  • A door
  • A dove
  • A city
  • An apple
  • An umbrella
  • A house

Plural nouns are nouns that are used when we’re talking about more than one person, more than one place and more than one thing or more than one idea. In order to change a singular noun to its plural form in English, we usually add either ‘s’, ‘es’ or ‘ies’.

A singular noun ending in ‘s’, ‘x’, ‘z’, ‘ch’, ‘sh’ and ‘o’ makes the plural by adding ‘es’.

Examples:

  • Dish                              Dishes
  • Watch                          Watches
  • Tomato                       Tomatoes
  • Dress                            Dresses
  • Remix                          Remixes
  • Box                                Boxes
  • Buzz                              Buzzes

A singular noun ending in ‘y, preceded by a consonant makes the plural by changing ‘y’ into ‘i’ and adding ‘es’.

Examples:

  • Diary                                     Daisies
  • City                                       Cities
  • Baby                                     Babies
  • Daisy                                    Daisies
  • Spy                                       Spies

A singular noun ending in ‘y, preceded by a vowel makes the plural by adding just ‘s’.

Examples:

  • Boy                                      Boys
  • Toy                                      Toys
  • Prey                                     Preys
  • Alley                                        Alleys
  • Day                                           Days

A singular noun ending in ‘f’ or ‘fe’ makes the plural by changing the ’f’ into ‘v’ then adding ‘es’.

Examples:

  • Knife                                  Knives
  • Wife                                   Wives
  • Leaf                                   Leaves
  • Half                                    Halves
  • Life                                     Lives
  • Loaf                                    Loaves
  • Elf                                       Elves

But there are many cases where the noun has an irregular plural form.

Examples:

  • Goose                                 Geese
  • Mouse                                 Mice
  • Man                                      Men
  • Woman                               Women
  • Foot                                      Feet
  • Tooth                                   Teeth
  • Child                                     Children
  • Person                                 People
  • Datum                                  Data
  • Phenomenon                    Phenomena

Some nouns have the same form in the singular and the plural.

Examples:

  • Sheep                                       Sheep
  • Species                                    Species
  • Fish                                             Fish
  • Deer                                           Deer
  • News                                          News
  • Aircraft                                      Aircraft