Suprising Words: il maglione
In Italian, words that typically end in –ione are considered feminine:
- la religione
- la stagione
- la vocazione
BE CAREFUL THOUGH: The noun il maglione is masculine. The words ending in -ione ‘rule’ is not always reliable! When in doubt, check a dictionary.
This is because maglione is la forma accrescitiva of the noun la maglia (it technically is not a -ione noun). This form of the noun implies something that is bigger or grander. In dictionaries, la forma accrescitiva is often indicated with the abbreviation accr. di + nome.
In Italian, la forma accrescitiva of a feminine noun often results in the noun becoming masculine, such as the noun il maglione.
Can you think of any other nouns that end in -ione that are masculine and not feminine?
From Il vero italiano, p. 54:
Don’t forget that the adjectives maschile and femminile are used to describe the gender of nouns and mean masculine and feminine, respectively. They also communicate the idea of quality – such a masculine or feminine voice, and so forth. Maschio and femmina are used to describe biological gender.