Material Noun: Definitions, Examples, and Uses

Material Noun: Definitions, Examples, and Uses are necessary for English Grammar and it is the matter or substance of which things are made.

 A Material Noun denotes the matter or substance of which things are made. It is also called Mass Noun.


(1) “River” is a common noun but “water” of which it is made is a Material Noun.

(2) “Sheep” common noun but “mutton” (the flesh of a sheep) is a Material Noun.

Material Noun Definitions

A Material Noun indicates the matter or substance of which things are made. Material Noun is also called Mass Noun. 

So, ” hen” or ” cock” is a Common Noun but  ” chicken” ( flesh of  ” hen” or ” cock” ) is a Material Noun.

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Material Nouns examples in sentences

  • (1) The table is made of wood.
  • (2) We cannot live without water.
  • (3) This package is made of fine leather.
  • (4) I would like to eat Dehradun rice.
  • (5) The trophy is made of silver.

Uses of Material Nouns.

(A) Material Noun becomes Common Noun when they are particularized.

  • (1)Fish live in water. ( “Fish” Common Noun)
  • (2) Fish is good for food. ( “Fish” Material Noun)
  • (3) The water of this tank is clear.
  • (4) The gold of the Golconda is pure.

In the 1st sentence, the noun denotes individual fish or fishes and is there for a common noun. In the 2nd sentence, it denotes the matter of which the bodies of fish are made and is, therefore, a Material Noun.

(b) Material Noun becomes common when they do not do things instead of the material.

  • (1) He was put in irons (chains made of iron).

(c) Material Nouns or Mass Nouns are always singular in number.

(d) Material noun always indicates liquid or solid substances.

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