In French, nouns ending in –AL, -AIL, -AU, EAU have specific forms in the plural.
They do not follow always the same rule.
The adjectives ending in –AL usually take the –AUX form in the masculine plural, and the –ALES form is the feminine plural. However, we will notice that some accept both forms –AUX and –ALS in the masculine plural.
To conclude, we will have some words in context.
1. Nouns ending in -AL
Nouns ending in –AL has their plural form in –AUX.
We have some exceptions of plural ending in –ALS. They do not turn to –AUX form but become –ALS :
2. Nouns ending in –AIL
Nouns ending in –AIL have generally their plural form in –AILS.
We have some exceptions of nouns ending in –AIL whose plural form ends in –AUX:
In some cases, the nouns bail, émail and travail can accept a plural form in –AILS.
3. Nouns ending in –AU an in –EAU
Nouns ending in –AU or –EAU in singular take respectively the –AUX or –EAUX form.
We have only one exception to this rule:
When plural form ends with the sound [o], you can find the right written form by finding the noun in singular:
Un chameau> des chameaux
Un cheval > des chevaux
If the singular form ends in –AL, the plural noun will end in –AUX.
If the singular form ends in –EAU, the plural noun will end in –EAUX.
4. Adjectives ending in –AL and their plural form
4.1. Adjectives in masculine plural form -AUX
Adjectives in French are accorded in number and gender to the noun they qualify.
Generally, adjectives ending in –AL take the –AUX form in the masculine plural.
4.2. Adjectives ending in –AL and their masculine plural form in -ALS
We also have some exceptions to the rule: some adjectives ending in –AL still keep their form with an –S at the end of their plural form:
4.3. Adjectives ending in –AL that can accept both plural forms –ALS and –AUX
Some adjectives ending in –AL can accept the two forms –ALS and –AUX in masculine plural.
Here is a sample:
4.4 Adjectives in feminine plural form -ALES
Adjectives ending in –AL will take the –ALES form in feminine plural version.
For example :
5. Words in context
Select the correct plural form of the nouns and adjectives: