Gender in English

Gender In English

A system of grammatical gender, whereby every noun was treated as either masculine, feminine or neuter, existed in Old English, but fell out of use during the Middle English period. Modern English retains features relating to natural gender, namely the use of certain nouns and pronouns to refer specifically to persons or animals of one or other sex. Some aspects of this usage have been influenced by the movement towards a preference for gender-neutral language. With the exceptions of the traditional, optional uses of she and her pronouns for ships (and analogous machinery) and for nation states (e.g. "Britain and her allies"), all other gender-related grammatical differences have vanished.

Read more about Gender In English:  Gender in Old English, Decline of Grammatical Gender, Modern English, Gender Neutrality in English

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Famous quotes containing the words gender in, english and/or gender:

    But there, where I have garnered up my heart,
    Where either I must live or bear no life;
    The fountain from the which my current runs
    Or else dries up: to be discarded thence,
    Or keep it as a cistern for foul toads
    To knot and gender in!
    William Shakespeare (1564–1616)

    Chaucer’s remarkably trustful and affectionate character appears in his familiar, yet innocent and reverent, manner of speaking of his God. He comes into his thought without any false reverence, and with no more parade than the zephyr to his ear.... There is less love and simple, practical trust in Shakespeare and Milton. How rarely in our English tongue do we find expressed any affection for God! Herbert almost alone expresses it, “Ah, my dear God!”
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    Most women of [the WW II] generation have but one image of good motherhood—the one their mothers embodied. . . . Anything done “for the sake of the children” justified, even ennobled the mother’s role. Motherhood was tantamount to martyrdom during that unique era when children were gods. Those who appeared to put their own needs first were castigated and shunned—the ultimate damnation for a gender trained to be wholly dependent on the acceptance and praise of others.
    Melinda M. Marshall (20th century)