For languages with two genders, is there a name for a noun (or pronoun, adjective, etc) which can be of either gender?
This seems to be quite common for names of professions, for instance, in Latin based languages:
- dentista (Spanish, Portuguese)
- dentiste (French)
The grammatical gender, in these cases, follows the natural gender.
(El buen / La buena) dentista.
Dictionaries tend to identify the gender of the noun by specifying both male and female:
dentiste /dɑ̃.tist/ masculin et féminin identiques
dentista m f (plural dentistas)
Is there a more precise, technical, or concise way to refer to such nouns?
When sipping cocktails and speaking to new Linguist nerds I've met on a bus trip through Europe, must I refer to "That class of nouns for which gender is determined by the natural gender of the referred object?" Or can I speak of, for instanced "morphological gender", "dual gender", etc?
When doing a (purely hypothetical--this isn't a homework question) test, and asked to identify the gender for a list of nouns, must I answer 'M', 'F', and 'M/F'? Or can the latter category be 'D' (dual?) or 'N' (natural)?