How to use este, esto … in Spanish Lately I have seen some of my students use esto when they should be using este, so I think that might be a good topic to touch in this blog.

 

Este, esto, esta…are demostrativos, demonstratives. And they are related to distances. But we need to keep something in mind, as in Spanish we have three distances when we talk about demonstratives while English only have two.

In Spanish we have aquí (here) , ahí (there) and allí (over there). Although I have to say that ahí and allí a lot of the time are interchangeable, as the demonstrative will give us the distance perceived.

Ok,  that is your heads up for this session.

Now let’s go to the lesson

 

How to use este, esto … in Spanish

 

I record a quick video too, you can find it at the end of the page.

While the lesson on the blog is in English, the video is in Spanish

 

When things are close to the speaker, things are aquí (here) we will use

Este if the noun is masculine/singular

Este libro

esta if the noun is feminine/singular

esta casa

estos if the noun is masculine/plural

estos libros

estas if the noun is feminine/plural

estas casas

So este/esta mean that, depending on the gender of the word that comes after them and estos/estas is theses.

#attention! The masculine singular is este, no esto, as many people think. We do have and use “esto”, but we use “esto” as a neutral, for things abstract or not as concrete, and it is never followed by a noun, example

                El cartero ha dejado esto para tí –> The postman has left this for you

 

For things that are far, or at a medium distance from the speaker but close to the listener, things ahí (there) we use

 

Ese if the noun is masculine/singular

Ese libro

esa if the noun is feminine/singular

esa casa

esos if the noun is masculine/plural

esos libros

ests if the noun is feminine/plural

esas casas

So ese/esa mean that, depending on the gender of the word that comes after them and esos/esas is thoses.

#note-same like esto, eso is not the masculine singular of esos, but the neutral form that we use by itself, example

¿qué es eso? –>  What is that?

For things far for both, the speaker and the listener, things that are allí (over there) we use

 

Aquel if the noun is masculine/singular

Aquel libro

aquella if the noun is feminine/singular

aquella casa

aquellos if the noun is masculine/plural

aquellos libros

aquellas if the noun is feminine/plural

aquellas casas

Aquel/aquella mean that over there, depending on the gender of the word that comes after them and aquellos/aquellas is thoses over there.

#note– and same than the previous ones, aquello is not the masculine, singular form but the neutral one, and not followed by a noun, example

¿te acuerdas de aquello que me dijiste sobre Julia? –>  Do you remember that you told me about Julia?

#SomethingToKeepInMind– Distance can be not only regarding location but time, for example if

I talk about the winter this year I will say –>  Este invierno

I talk about the winter a while ago I will use –>  Ese invierno

I talk about a winter when I was a child I will use –> Aquel invierno.

 

 

And that is all my friend! I hope you enjoy this lesson and you have learnt something new.

Now it is your turn, leave a comment in the comment below with a sentences using one of these demonstratives we have seen.

Have a good one and I will write you soon!

 

2 Responses to “How to use este, esto … in Spanish”

  1. Wendy Smith

    Thank you Blanca for explaining the differences in the uses of este, esa etc. I wish somebody had made it clearer that esto/eso was not the masculine form a long time ago!! Gracias

    Reply
    • blancadt

      Thanks for your comment Wendy 🙂 I am glad it helped 🙂

      Reply

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