“Shape” in “the ball has a spherical shape”

“Size” in “the ball has a big size”

Are “shape” and “size” abstract nouns?

  • If you mean "abstract noun" as a binary opposite to "concrete noun", then yes, they're abstract. There are other ways to categorize nouns that put things like "size" and "shape" somewhere in between purely abstract and purely concrete. I don't know what those categories are
    – gotube
    Jul 27, 2021 at 6:36

1 Answer 1


Abstract nouns are those denoting an idea, quality, or state rather than a concrete object, e.g. truth, danger, happiness.

So yes "size" and "shape" are abstract nouns, that is they have abstract meanings. But this is not part of the grammatical structure of English, but could apply equally to any other language. The concept expressed by the English word "size", the French "taille", the Chinese "尺寸" or the Zulu "ubukhulu" is an abstract concept, and so these are abstract nouns of their respective language.

There is also a considerable grey area between "abstract" and "concrete". "There are three shapes on my desk, made of wood. Please bring them to me" seems to be a fairly concrete sense of "shape". But "I love the shape of chair" seems to referring to an abstract quality.

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