Abstract Noun: Formation, Definition, and Examples

Abstract Noun: Formation, Definition, and Examples are important topics in English Grammar. This article will help to understand Abstract Noun: Formation, Definition, and Examples.

An Abstract noun is usually the name of a qualityaction, or state considered apart from the object to which it belongs. As,

Quality: goodness, kindness, darkness, hardness, brightness, honesty, wisdom, bravery.

Action: Laughter, theft, movement, judgment, hatred.

State: childhood, boyhood, slavery, youth, poverty, sickness.

What is Abstract Noun

An Abstract Noun is a Noun that names things that we cannot see, smell, touch, or taste. It can be an idea (thought), an experience (pain), a quality (kindness), or a feeling (happiness).

Name of an Idea :Truth, knowledge
Name of an Experience :Problem, comfort
Name of a Quality :Honesty, courage
Name of a Feeling :Love, pride, anger

Read more:

Know about Nouns and Types
Quiz on nouns

Abstract Nouns examples in sentences

  • (1) Honesty is the best policy.
  • (2) Kindness is a great virtue.
  • (3) He is very meritorious from his childhood.
  • (4) Lean freedom is better than fat slavery.
  • (5) I want obedience from you.

Uses of Abstract Nouns.

(a) Generally, all nouns ending in  -ness, -tion, -hood, -ship, -dom, -ment, -ism, -th,  -ty, -ce, -cy, are Abstract Noun: goodness, kindness,  education, childhood, friendship, Kingdom, attachment, Gandhism, strength, cruelty, justice, infancy, etc.

(b) Names of sciences, arts, and diseases are now treated as Abstract Nouns: music, politics, grammar, malaria, etc but when different kinds or attacks of a disease are meant they become Common Nouns.

 Thus, I had one of my headaches. Fevers are generally preceded by chills or rigor.

(c ) An Abstract Noun becomes a proper noun when it is personified,-that is when it is spoken of as an individual person. It must be then written with a capital letter as proper nouns are: Let not ambition mock their useful toil.

(d) An Abstract Noun becomes a common noun when they are particularised: They praised the honesty of the boy. He committed theft.

(e ) An abstract noun becomes a common noun when the objects possess the quality instead of the quality itselfHe is a justice(judge) of the High Court. She is a beauty.(a beautiful lady.) This use of the abstract noun is known as Abstract for Concrete.

Formation of Abstract Nouns

Generally, all nouns ending in -ness-tion, –hood, –ship, –dom, –ment, –ism, –th, –ty, –ce, –cy, are Abstract Noun: Abstract Noun Formation can be made from Adjectives, Verbs, and Common Nouns. Some Examples of the formation of Abstract Nouns from Adjectives, verbsand Common Nouns are added in the following.[ -ness , -tion, -hood, -ship, -dom, -ment, -ism, -th, -ty, -ce, -cy, ]

Adjectives To Abstract Nouns

Abstract Nouns formed from the following Adjectives.

AdjectiveAbstract NounsAdjectivesAbstract Nouns
1. Longlength15. broadbreadth
2. youngYouth16. freefreedom
3. humbleHumility17. proudpride
4. decentDecency18. bravebravery
5. cruelCruelty19. Novelnovelty
6. bitterBitterness20. quickquickness
7. strongStrength21. highheight
8. truetruth22. poorPoorness/poverty
9. shortShortness23. justjustice
10. darkDarkness24. vainvanity
11. deepDepth25. sanesanity
12. wideWidth26. ignorantignorance
13. goodGoodness27. deepdepth
14. wisewisdom28. vacantvacancy

Verbs to Abstract Nouns

Abstract nouns formed from the following Verbs.

VerbAbstract NounsVerbAbstract Nouns
1. Laughlaughter18. seizeseizure
2. obeyobedience19. flatterflattery
3. Livelife20. departdeparture
4. expectExpectation/expectancy21. Persevereperseverance
5. excelexcellence22. defenddefense
6. knowknowledge23. thinkthought
7. stealstealth24. protectprotection
8. believebelief25. adviseadvice
9. Serveservice26. punishpunishment
10. hatehatred27. diedeath
11. pleasepleasure28. succeedsuccess
12. actaction29. freefreedom
13. starvestarvation30. seesite
14. occupyOccupancy/occupation31. Judgejudgment
15. choosechoice32. pursuepursuit
16. movemovement33. relieveRelief 
17. concealconcealment34. converseconversation
  35. discoverdiscovery

Common Nouns to Abstract Nouns

Abstract Nouns are formed from the following Common Nouns. 

Common NounsAbstract NounsCommon NounsAbstract Nouns
1. KingKinghood14. biggerbeggary
2. manManhood15. cowardcowardice
3. thieftheft16. priestpriesthood
4. womanWomanhood17. boyboyhood
5. bankruptBankruptcy18. bondbondage
6. infantinfancy19. piratepiracy
7. ownerOwnership20. pilgrimpilgrimage
8. rogueroguery21. friendfriendship
9. RegentRegency22. captainCaptaincy/captainship
10. authorauthorship23. Rascalrascality
11. motherMotherhood24. patriotpatriotism
12. agentAgency25. gluttongluttony
13. heroheroism26. 

Read more about Nouns:

Proper NounMaterial Noun
Common NounAbstract Noun
Collective NounCountable and Uncountable Nouns
Concrete and Abstract NounsSingular and Plural Noun & Number
Gender in English Grammar