9 Abstract noun| concrete noun| units of time| instanciation | other

This feature allows one to specify the semantic value of the noun related to the sought-after determiner. It is subdivided into five values: « concret » (concrete), « abstrait » (abstract), « unité de temps » (unit of time), « instanciation ou mesure » (instanciation or measure), which is, as it were, the counterpart of « unité de temps » (unit of time) for that which is not temporal, and finally « autre » (other).

Abstrait/concret (abstract/concrete)

Certain French nouns are called abstract, and others, concrete. This distinction is an intuitive one. A concrete noun designates an entity which can be perceived by one of our five senses, whereas an abstract noun designates an entity which cannot be thus perceived and which only our cerebral faculties can comprehend. A noun may pass from one category into the other by way of its being used metaphorically.

Example of an abstract noun:
Toutes valors et toutes granz bontez / Sont plus en vous qu'en dame qui soit nee. (1200- 1250)

Example of a concrete noun:
Lesdits anciens estimoyent tels prodiges venir souvent de la pure volonté de Dieu (1400-1650)

Unité de temps, instanciation ou mesure (unit of time, instanciation or measure)

The characterisation of units of time, or measurements in general, is delicate, for they fall in neither of the categories presented above. Units of measurement allow one's cerebral faculties to conceive entities which may be either concrete or abstract, but the units in themselves are neither: a kilo of flour, an ounce of courage. Such nouns, whose usage is widespread, have been analysed separately.

Example of units of time:
En l'Empire, ou li Alemant ont esté maint jor et maint an, / si com li contes dit, segnor, ot jadis un empereor. (1200-1250)

Examples of units of measurement/instanciation:
Mais par une autre opinion bien avoüable, je tien que les escrits d'un poëte naturel, qui sera esclairé de quelque lumiere de science et d'industrie, seront tousjours de plus grande estime que ceux d'un esprit qui n'estant poëte que par le seul art, composera des vers exactement elabourez à la reigle. (1400-1650)
un séminaire de toute sorte d'hérésies. (1600-1800)
Il ne faut admettre, dans un édifice, aucune partie destinée au seul ornement ; (1600-1800)

Autre (other)

In general, the value, « other » is used when there are general words which function as proforms, unless the context makes it clear what the true referent is.

Examples
quelque chose de parfait
[...] procedantes de quelque sorte de relaschement, elles sembloient un peu blesser cette grande pureté, que l'église jugeoit nécessaire à ceux qui s'approchoient de l'eucharistie