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Nouns 06 - Abstract and Concrete Nouns
Art can be abstract - but so can nouns.

Nouns 06 - Abstract and Concrete Nouns

A noun is one of the eight parts of speech that are fundamental to learning English. In previous quizzes we were able to classify nouns into different types. We learnt that nouns can be classified as common nouns, proper nouns or compound nouns. In this quiz we will turn our attention to two types of nouns - namely, concrete nouns and abstract nouns.

Concrete nouns are nouns that can be felt by the five senses of sound, sight, touch, smell and taste. Concrete nouns are the largest group of nouns in the English language. They encompass all humans, animals, birds, plants, places and objects. We can use our senses to enjoy the different attributes displayed by concrete nouns.

Concrete nouns can come under other classes of nouns. For instance, while a building is a concrete noun, it is also a common noun. The Empire State Building is a proper noun as well as a concrete noun. Concrete nouns can also be countable nouns or uncountable nouns. An example of a countable noun would be BIRD as we can talk about FOUR BIRDS. An example of an uncountable noun would be RICE as we cannot say FOUR RICES. Concrete nouns can also be collective nouns such as PEOPLE.

While concrete nouns are something which we can feel with our senses how do we classify words describing emotions or feelings? The answer is abstract nouns. Abstract nouns classify emotions, feelings and characteristics such as childhood, courage, pride and honesty. FEAR is an abstract noun and so are WISDOM and STUPIDITY. Other abstract noun examples are HAPPINESS and MISERY. We can see why these nouns are termed as abstract nouns. We cannot experience the attributes of the abstract nouns through our senses. We experience them through means other than the five senses and hence they are abstract.

The quiz that follows helps you to identify concrete and abstract nouns, which you can then add to your vocabulary.

1.
Tiger, Freedom - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Tiger' is a concrete noun as you can see a tiger and play with it. 'Freedom' is an abstract noun as it represents a condition where a person is free of some regulation, or a country which enjoys independence
2.
Kindness, Scissors - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Kindness' is an abstract noun as it denotes a kind of behaviour. 'Scissors' is a concrete noun as it describes something you can feel and see and that you can use to cut things
3.
Computer, Honesty - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Computer' is a concrete noun as you can see and work on a computer. 'Honesty' is an abstract noun as it is a virtue
4.
Classroom, Excellence - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Classroom' is a concrete noun as you can see a classroom and sit in it. 'Excellence' is an abstract noun as it represents a degree of quality
5.
Eraser, Forest - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Eraser' and 'Forest' are both concrete nouns as you can see, feel and use an eraser, and you can see a forest with lots of trees and animals
6.
Shelf, Crayon - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Shelf' and 'Crayon' are both concrete nouns as you can see or feel them. You can store things on a shelf and you can draw with crayons
7.
Joy, Cushion - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Joy' is an abstract noun as it represents an emotion. 'Cushion' is a concrete noun as you can see and feel a cushion
8.
Patience, River - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Patience' signifies control of an emotion and hence is an abstract noun. 'River' is something you can see, can swim in and can ride a boat on and so is a concrete noun. 'River' can also be a common noun as it can represent any river
9.
Beauty, Woman - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Beauty' is an abstract noun as it creates an emotion of pleasure or satisfaction. 'Woman' is a concrete noun as it denotes a real person
10.
Bravery, Friendship - Which kind of nouns are these?
Abstract, Concrete
Concrete, Abstract
Concrete, Concrete
Abstract, Abstract
'Bravery' and 'Friendship' are both abstract nouns. Bravery is an act of courage and friendship is a relationship between friends
Author:  V T Narendra

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