How appropriate. We're about to embark on a journey of nouns that start with N. If you're a fan of Wheel of Fortune, you'll know N is a pretty popular letter based on their R-S-T-L-N-E algorithm.
Although the letter N is the birthplace of important nouns, such as nature and nurture, it's also a frequently-used letter for adjectives beginning with N. Let's make a quick study of nouns themselves and then explore a long list of nouns that start with N.
A noun is a person, place, thing, or idea. Often, they're accompanied by articles, like "a," "an," and "the." Take a look at the subject of the next sentence you read. It's likely to be a noun. For example, "My nemesis lives in my neighborhood."
Notice the objects of sentences, too. They're frequently nouns as well. That means they'll usually come after the verb in the sentence. For example, "He gave the napkin to me." Nouns also function as names, including people, cities, and more.
N-nouns abound. Most of us live in a neighborhood of some sort and, certainly, most of us love a good novel. Ready to expand the horizon of your vocabulary? From nachos to nymphs, here are 50 nouns that start with N.
Nacho - a small, often triangular piece of a tostada, topped with cheese
Nanometer - one billionth of a meter
Napkin - a small piece of cloth or paper used while eating to wipe fingers and lips
Narcissism - excessive admiration of yourself
Narration - reading or telling a story
Narrowness - a physical restriction
Nastiness - a desire to harm others or see others suffer
Nationality - the state of being part of a nation, whether by birth or naturalization
Nature - the natural Earth and the things on it
Navigator - a person who directs and plots the course of a vehicle or vessel
Neatness - the state of being neat
Necessity - something that is absolutely needed
Neediness - the characteristic of being needy, or needing a lot of attention
Negativity - the characteristic of being pessimistic
Neglect - the act of disregarding something
Negotiator - one who negotiates or moderates
Neighborhood - a group of houses or buildings that are grouped together in an area
Nemesis - an enemy who can't be beaten
Neon - a gas with ten electrons and ten protons
Newcomer - one who recently arrived
Niceness - pleasantness, especially of behavior or personality
Niche - a specialized part of a market for products or services
Nickname - a substitute name given to a person, place, or thing
Niece - the daughter of a brother or sister
Nightmare - a bad dream, or an experience that's like a bad dream
Nimbus - a bright cloud, surrounding mythological gods or goddesses
Nipper - a tool, such as pliers, used for squeezing
Nirvana - a state of being in peace or complete happiness
Nitrogen - a colorless, tasteless, odorless gaseous chemical
Nitwit - a silly person
Nobility - a group of people distinguished by high birth, particularly monarchs and their family
Node - a central area, often a swollen area
Noisiness - the quality of being loud
Nomad - a person without a designated home
Nonsense - behavior that is silly and foolish
Noodle - a flat, wide strip of pasta
Normal - the usual, or the average
Norwegian - a native or inhabitant of Norway
Notion - an idea, belief, or vague knowledge of something
Novel - a fictional book of substantial length
Nudge - a gentle push to get attention or give a signal
Nugget - a small chunk of something
Nuisance - someone or something that is causing trouble
Numbness - absent or reduced sensitivity to stimulation
Numeracy - the quality of being good at math or able to understand and use numbers
Nursery - a place where parents may temporarily leave children with trained attendants
Nurturer - someone who provides food or care
Nuttiness - the quality of having a nutty flavor or texture
Nylon - cloth or yarn made from synthetic materials
Nymph - a mythical spirit or goddess, or a beautiful young woman
Since they function in so many different capacities, it won't surprise you to learn there are over 10 different types of nouns. If a noun is referring to a person or place, it's likely a proper noun (e.g. Arthur, Denver, Montana, Ireland, and the Eiffel Tower). An example of that would be, "The Eiffel Tower sparkles like a diamond at night."
The opposite of a proper noun is a common noun. These nouns refer to general, unspecified entities. In the example above, Eiffel Tower is a proper noun. But, if that line simply read, "That monument sparkles like a diamond," you'd know the subject was a common noun. Common nouns are neither capitalized nor specific.
You've also got compound nouns (e.g., makeup and hair dryer), countable nouns, possessive nouns, and pronouns. In fact, it's common to see both nouns and pronouns in a single sentence: "Jamie handed the talisman to her."
Will you find a way to insert "numeracy" into your next shopping spree at Saks Fifth Avenue? Or how about "nimbus" into your travel plans? It's a fun letter, right?
Let's take a look at 10 N-nouns in full-blown action. Click on the link in each sentence to see more example sentences containing that N-noun:
If there's any part of speech that's highly nuanced, it's the noun. It stands at the front of the sentence as a subject or the back of the sentence as an object. It can be capitalized, generalized, and more. Words that start with N are certainly common, but how about a good, strong vowel? Take a look at Nouns that Start with E, for E is a very popular fellow.