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Common endings for plural nouns
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By far most nouns take -en in the plural. The formula is very simple:

noun + en

However, when you add -en to a noun, you have to bear in mind three spelling rules:

1. Maintain the length of the vowel

Short vowels should stay short, long vowels should stay long, regardless of whether the noun is written in its singular or plural form.

See also keeping vowels short/long.

de rok de rokken the skirt(s)
het geval de gevallen the case(s)

2. No open double vowel

If the last syllable of the singular form contains a double vowel, be sure to avoid an 'open double vowel' in the plural form.

de peer de peren the pear(s)
het gevaar de gevaren the danger(s)

3. Replace hard f/s by soft v/z

If a singular noun ends in hard (unvoiced) f or s, we generally write soft (voiced) v and z in the plural. See also hard and soft consonants.

de neus de neuzen the nose(s)
de brief de brieven the letter(s)

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Last updated on May 17, 2007 ::