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What Are Spanish Demonstrative Adjectives?

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Infographics of Spanish Demonstrative Adjectives

What Is a Demonstrative Adjective?

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In accordance with its very name, these adjectives have the function of demonstrating or indicating a quality assigned to the noun they modify. These English ones are a little simpler than in Spanish, since in this case there are three different sets represented by the words "este" (this in English), "ese" (that in English), "aquel" (that in English).

Male singularesteeseaquel
Feminine singularestaesaaquella
Male pluralestosesosaquellos
Female pluralestasesasaquellas

  • Este profesor enseña bien. =This teacher teaches well.

  • Esa camisa es negra. =That shirt is black.

  • Aquellos estudiantes son mala conducta. =Those students are misconduct.

  • Esta chica es ingenua. =This girl is naive.

  • Esos libros son absurdos. =Those books are absurd.

  • Me gusta aquella casa por su grandioso jardín. =I like that house for its great garden.

  • Ese amigo tuyo es muy descortés e insensato. =That friend of yours is very rude and foolish.

Common Demonstrative Adjectives

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In the exercise of the practical use of the demonstrative pronouns, words emerge that function as alternatives that can be used instead of them, as can be seen below.

Aquí o acáahíAllí o allá
aquíallípor ahí

  • Esa niña es muy inteligente y ordenada. =That girl is very intelligent and orderly.

  • Esta comida es la ideal. =This food is ideal.

  • Ese restaurante me fascina. =That restaurant fascinates me.

  • Esa carrera de caballos es desigual. =That horse race is uneven.

  • Estas paletas de chocolate son ricas. =These chocolate lollipops are rich.

  • Quiero esas magdalenas para ti. =I want those cupcakes for you.

  • Tráeme esas orquídeas para cuidarlas. =Bring me those orchids to take care of them.

Special Pairs of Demonstrative Adjectives

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There are special pairs of of demonstratives along with these common demonstrative adjectives : “the one” (sometimes just “one”) and “the other;” and “the former” and “the latter.” Similar pairs are used to refer to two things that have already been named in a sentence. Below are some Examples
  • Esos chistes tuyos son demasiado malos. =Those jokes of yours are too bad.

  • Ese gusto por las flores es una obsesión. =That taste for flowers is an obsession.

  • Aquel letrero dice peligro inminente. =That sign says imminent danger.

  • Aquellos edificios son los más altos de la ciudad. =Those buildings are the tallest in town.

  • Aquellas nubes indican que va a llover. =Those clouds indicate that it's going to rain.

  • Estos libros y esos periódicos de la mesa ocupan mucho espacio. =These books and newspapers on the table take up a lot of space.

  • Este carro y aquel camión son míos. =This car and that truck are mine.

  • Las letras de esa palabra deben coincidir. =The letters of that word must match.

Can Numbers Be Demonstrative Adjectives?

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Generally its easy to think of numbers as adjectives, right? Well, ordinal numbers like as third, fourth, fifth can act as demonstrative adjectives. There are an infinite number of these adjectives. You can usually spot them because, with a few exceptions, these are the ones that end in -th. Below are good examples.
  • El primer cheque de pago que recibí fue de $ 500. =The first paycheck I received was for $500.

  • El séptimo día de la semana es el domingo. =The seventh day of the week is Sunday.

  • A finales del siglo XIX, se libró la Guerra Civil en Estados Unidos. =In the late nineteenth century, the Civil War in the United States was fought.

  • Después de mi tercer pedazo de pizza, estaba lleno. =After my third piece of pizza, I was stuffed.

  • Para su quincuagésimo cumpleaños, le compramos a mi mamá un pastel enorme. =For her fiftieth birthday party, we bought my mom a huge cake.

Related Lessons in Advanced Course, to further your understanding.

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Spanish Demonstrative Adjectives

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Adjectives Used In Exclamations

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Spanish Indefinite Adjectives

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Spanish Possessive Adjectives

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