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History of Pronouns: Points of Comparison

How many languages have gendered pronouns?

map of languages and different numbers of genders


Table showing that 1145 languages had no gender system, 50 had 2 genders, 26 had 3, 12 had 4, and 24 had 5 or more

Source: Number of genders. In World Atlas of Language Structures.


Han Singular masculine
Hon Singular feminine
Hen Singular gender neutral
  • 2012: Children's book Kivi and Monsterdog uses gender-neutral pronoun, hen.
  • 2015: Hen incorporated into official Swedish Academy Glossary.
  • 2019: Study finds that use of hen "is associated with people expressing less bias in favor of traditional gender roles and categories."


Tavits, M., & Pérez, E. O. (2019). Language influences mass opinion toward gender and LGBT equality. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 116(34), 16781–16786.

Rogers, A. (2019, Aug 15). Actually, Gender-Neutral Pronouns Can Change a Culture. Wired

Spanish (Argentina)

latino singular masculine
latina singular feminine
latin@, latinx singular neutral, developed mainly in U.S.
latine singular neutral, popularized in Argentina


Berger, M. (2019, December 15). A guide to how gender-neutral language is developing around the world. Washington Post.

Schmidt, S. (2019, December 5). Teens in Argentina are leading the charge for a gender-neutral language. Washington Post.