Demonstrative pronouns

More of Pronouns in Spanish. Demonstrative Pronouns.


Demonstrative Pronouns

The demonstrative pronouns are pronouns that denote degrees of proximity of objects in relation to the speaker and the listener.

Demonstrative pronounsUnlike English, where are concerned with only two degrees of proximity, three grades are used in Spanish.

I.e., in Spanish, in addition to the immediate closeness degree and the distant, used a third degree identified with an intermediate point of closeness.

The other noticeable difference and that we have seen in other grammatical concepts, is the existence of male and female gender exists also in the demonstrative pronouns.




The Demonstrative pronouns are the following:

  • este, esta, esto, estos, estasthis, these: are used for closeness
  • Este es muy listo → This is very smart
  • Prefiero esta → I prefer this
  • ese, esa, esos, esasthat, those: are used for medium distances
    • De las tres casas, compré esa → From the three houses, I bought that
    • Ese es mi hermano → That is my brother
    • Esos son mis lapices → Those are my pencils
  • aquel, aquella, aquellos, aquellasthat, those: are used for long distances:
    • Aquel señor lo compró al contado → That man bought it cash
    • Aquellas son mis primas → Those are my cousins




Illustrate these explanations by making a comparison table :
Pronombres Demostrativos / Demonstrative Pronouns.
Distancia inmediata / Immediate Distance Distancia Media / Medium Distance Distancia Larga / Long Distance
Singular Masculino / Singular Masculine este / this ese / that aquel / that
Singular Femenino / Singular Feminine esta / this esa / that aquella / that
Plural Masculino / Plural Masculine estos / these esos / those aquellos / those
Plural Femenino / Plural Feminine estas / these esas / those aquellas / those

Finally must mention the existence in Spanish of the indeterminate demonstrative pronouns, that are which use when not have required an or both of them variables (gender and number) of the noun to which corresponds the pronoun.

It is used for immediate distance: esto, for intermediate distance: eso and for long distance: aquello. To express the same idea in English, the word “it” is the most used, regardless of the distance, gender or number.

    • ¿Qué es eso? → What is it?
    • Soy capaz de leer aquello → I’m able to read it

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More about Possessive Pronouns in Spanish.


Possessive Pronouns

As in English, the possessive pronouns are those  pronouns used to designate:

  • property
  • relationship with something

Although possessive pronouns, or simply possessive,  have as main value of possession, they also have a relational value, because it linked  “the possessed” with one or more owners.

In the common grammar, the most important classification criterion is based in the position,  before or after, respect to the noun. In the theoric Grammar, are usually distinguished with the criterion that the possessive pronouns replace the noun. When accompanying the noun, are classified as possessive adjectives.





The main and very important difference respect to English, is given by the distinctions which are made in Spanish in terms of genders (male and female) in the case of possessive pronouns and the number (singular and Plural) in both cases.

We see this through examples:

Possessive Pronouns (After noun or replacing it)
Persona/ Subject Singular Masc. Plural Masc. Singular Femin. Plural Femin. English
Yo/I mio mios mia mias mine
Tu/You tuyo tuyos tuya tuyas yours
El-Ella/He-She suyo suyos suya suyas his/hers
Nosotros/We nuestro nuestros nuestra nuestras ours
Ustedes/You vuestro vuestros vuestra vuestras yours
Ellos-Ellas/They suyo suyos suya suyas theirs

El perro blanco es mio → The white dog is mine → It is mine

Esta casa grande es suya  → This big house is hers → It is hers




 

Possessive Adjetives (before noun)
Persona/ Subject Singular Plural English
Yo/I mi mis my
Tu/You tu tus your
El-Ella/He-She su sus his/her/its
Nosotros/We nuestro nuestros our
Ustedes/You vuestro vuestro your
Ellos-Ellas/They su sus their

Este es mi perro blanco → This is my white dogpossessive pronouns

Esta es su casa grande → This is her big house

And by combining these forms of use of both possessives:

Este es mi perro blanco. Es el mio → This is my white dog. It is mine

Esta es su casa grande. Es la suya →This is her big house. It is hers



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The “World” of pronouns. Personal pronouns.


Talking about Pronouns in Spanish.

By definition, a pronoun is the grammatical element used to replace or specify the persons or objects within a sentence. This definition is valid both in Spanish and in English. But… when going deeper into the matter, we realize that the definition is not enough to make us see the real level of complexity on this extensive topic. So much so, that within our page Web of Tips, we will also have a category dedicated to pronouns, which we will devote several Posts.




In English, the basic grammar defined, initially, three types of pronouns: who in Spanish are called personal pronouns, include two of those types of pronouns, the subject and object Pronouns. The third type of pronoun in English, the possessives, exists in the same way in Spanish.
In order to facilitate access to the theme of the verbs and their conjugations, this first Post just covering the subject, object and possessive Pronouns. These are the following:

tabpron1

pronouns

 

object pronouns




In the case of Subject Pronouns and the Objects Pronouns, the only special comment is concerning the existence of genders (male and female) in the pronouns of the 3rd person singular, and in the second and third persons of the Plural.

tabpron3

And in the case of possessive pronouns, there is the difference of genders and quantities of objects to own (one or more).
Another important observation is that relating to the use of the, very useful, pronoun “It”. Again, the practicality of the English language allows more complicated the Spanish learning!.
There is no word of the Spanish that translated the term “It” uniquely. In fact, when you look for the equivalence in a dictionary, you get at least 6 or 7 meanings, depending on context, the quantity and the gender of what you are describing when using the pronoun.
The first meaning is the word “el”, “ella”, “ellos” and “ellas”. These words are equivalent to the “It” that we use to refer to an animal (not family), object, or action when we speak of them repeatedly:

This is my IPod. It sound great
Este es mi Ipod. El suena genial

I bought this chair yesterday. It is very expensive
Yo compre esta silla ayer. Ella es muy cara

Spanish Verbs Software

Pronouns 1

The second is formed by the endings “la”, “lo”, “las”, “los”:

Do you need a coin? Take it
¿Necesitas una moneda? Tómala

This is my car. You can use it
Este es mi carro. Tu puedes usarlo

I have ten oranges. Take four and give it to the kids
Tengo diez naranjas. Toma cuatro y dáselas a los niños

These shoes don’t have the same size. Compare it
Estos zapatos no tienen la misma medida. Compáralos

Other use of “it” is to indicate the equivalent to “eso” to speak of something indeterminate:

I didn’t say it
Yo no dije eso

For the rest of equivalences of “It”, we will see them in other Posts.



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