Grammar Monster
Grammar Monster

What Is the Masculine Gender? (with Examples)

What Is the Masculine Gender? (with Examples)

Masculine gender is one of three genders in English grammar. The three genders for nouns and pronouns are: Here are the associated singular pronouns:

GenderPronounPossessive Adjective
(a type of pronoun)
Absolute Possessive Pronoun
masculine pronounshe
Example: He is warm.
Example: Those are his tools.
Example: Those are his.
feminine pronounsshe
Example: She is warm.
Example: Those are her shoes.
Example: These are hers.
neuter pronounsit
Example: It is warm.
Example: Those are its toys.
Example: These are its. (rare)

Unless its meaning makes it obviously male (e.g., boy, king, boar) or female (e.g., princess, hen, mare), a noun in English is neuter by default.

(Note: Large machines, such as ships and trains, which - by default - are neuter, are sometimes affectionally called she. An animal is referred to as it, or he or she when the sex is known.)

Interactive example:

She / He / Them / Drake / Wizard / Goat / QE2 [show me the masculine ones]

You Can Use He to Mean He and She

In formal writing, you can use he to represent he and she. Likewise, his is used for his and her. For example:
  • Please ask your guest to sign his/her name on his/her ticket.
  • (This is not wrong, but it's unwieldy.)
  • Please ask your guest to sign his name on his ticket.
  • (This in an acceptable alternative.)
Interactive Test