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What’s Plural of Goose? (Geese? Geeses? Gooses?)

A gander at this lesson will teach you the plural of goose is geese (no pun intended).


What’s the plural of “goose”?

What’s good sauce for the goose is good for the gander“, as the old saying goes. But what if you want to mention more than one goose, do you say geeses, gooses, geese? What’s the plural of goose?

Goslings. Image by Jan Meeus.
Goslings. Image by Jan M


Goose: singular & plural

  • The plural of goose is geese. Goose is singular.

  • Gooses or geeses are both incorrect, and are not recognized words in English.

  • Goose is an “irregular” plural form; regular nouns add “s” or “es” to denote a plural.

Sentence example
singular Goose feathers provide high-quality insulation in quilts, pillows and coats.
pluralWild geese pair for life and associate in flocks called gaggles.


Irregular plural noun forms

The following singular nouns are irregular since they become plural by switching their inner vowels with another vowel, or pair of vowels:


singularplural
goosegeese
toothteeth
footfeet
mousemice
diedice
louselice


Examples with the word “goose” in sentences

The Cackling goose and the Canadian goose are both common species within the goose family

Goose belong to the waterfowl species in the family Anatidae.

Geese are monogamous, and live in permanent pairs throughout the year.

Geese honk while in flight to encourage other members of the flock to maintain a ‘v-formation’ and to help communicate with one another.

In flight, a group of geese is called a skein, team or wedge.

Terms for male/female geese

  • Male geese are called a gander (recall the German origin of goose, gans).

  • Female geese are dames, and baby geese are goslings.

What do you call a group of geese?

  • Geese in groups on the ground are a gaggle; i.e., “a gaggle of geese“.

  • Geese in flight are either a wedge (when in v-formation), a skeim or team.

Phrases with the word “goose”

PhraseMeaning
what’s good sauce for the goose is good sauce for the gandera common phrase meaning what is accepted treatment for one person is equally appropriate for someone else. Often used in the context of sex and gender equality, because a goose is female and a gander is male.
to have a ganderto have a look at something; to peruse
one’s goose is cookedto do something that spoils someone’s plans and prevents them from succeeding
silly gooseto describe someone that’s acting silly
killing the goose that lays the golden eggsfrom Aesop’s Fables, and refers to “greed-motivated action that destroys or otherwise renders useless a favourable situation that would have provided benefits over time.”
To go on a wild goose chasedoing something that’s futile, or a waste of time and effort. It originates from a 16th-century horse racing event.

Origin of the word “goose”

Geese comes from tee Old English gos “a goose,” from Proto-Germanic gans- “goose.”


In review

To refer to a single goose, use goose. To mention more than one goose, use geese. As a collective noun, a group of geese are called a gaggle, as in ‘a gaggle of geese.’ Geese in flight are called a skein, team or wedge.


Read about other plural nouns


Sources

  1. The Elk House
  2. Canadian Geese
  3. Plural of animals quiz
  4. Origin of goose
  5. Group of geese
  6. Wikipedia: goose
  7. “Goose.” McGraw-Hill’s Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions. 2006. McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. 18 Dec. 2023

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