A noun is an important part of speech, and its usage differs based on the language spoken. Some of the different types include collective, abstract, and concrete. In addition, these words can be proper, compound, or count. It is usually not necessary to know the name of a particular type to use it properly, but it can help.
Collective nouns are a category that represent a group of things, such as the word "group." While this word is mundane, many specific collective nouns exist. For example, a group of ferrets can be referred to as a "busyness," and a group of hounds can be referred to as a "cry."
An abstract noun represents intangible or abstract ideas. For example, "talent" is abstract because it refers to the concept of a person’s ability. Other examples include words that represent feelings, such as "helplessness."
Concrete nouns are essentially the opposite of abstract ones. While abstract words represent ideas and feelings, concrete ones represent things generally understood by human senses. For example, a "person" is concrete because people can be seen, heard, and smelled.
A proper noun is the name of a person, place, or thing. "John Smith" comes under this category because it is the name of a person. In addition, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is the name of a place. Proper names are nearly always capitalized in the English language, but the words "of" and “and” are conjunctions that should not be capitalized in this situation.
Compound nouns are made up of two words, both of them a noun. For example, toothpaste, bubblegum, and football are compounds. Blackboard is not, because black describes an item, and therefore it is an adjective. A compound word that includes an adjective is not included in this category.
A count noun is a thing a person can count. Computers, fingers, and websites are included in this type, whereas oxygen and cranberry juice are not, since they cannot be counted. If there can be more than one of something rather than just more, than it falls into this group.
To understand a mass noun, it is best to know what a count noun is. Mass nouns are things that cannot be counted, such as oxygen, history, and poetry. A person can have more oxygen and know more about history or poetry, but he or she cannot have two oxygens.