Noun plural form
The formation of plural in Persian can be divided into three cases:
- using the plural suffix -hâ
- using the plural suffix -ân
- Arabic plural form
Words are normally pluralized with the suffix hâ e.g. ketâbhâ (books).
The plural suffix ân (gân after e and yân after other vowels) is mainly used to designate human beings. For example:
|singular||non-human plural||human plural|
|sar — head||sarhâ — heads||sarân — chiefs, heads, leaders|
|gozashte — the past||gozashtehâ — the past things, days, …||gozashtegân — the people of the past|
There are many Arabic loanwords in Persian and many of them have also brought their plural form (that can be regular or irregular) into written Persian. However, they are optional and you can use -hâ to pluralize them. In fact, Arabic plurals are not found in spoken Persian and words are pluralized with -hâ. Even in written Persian, the use of Arabic plurals has greatly decreased.
NOTE In Persian, nouns are not pluralized when used with numbers because a number itself indicates the quantity e.g. yek ketâb (one/a book), do ketâb (two books, literally: two book).