This & That in Spanish: The Anti-Confusion Guide

this and that image

Get our free email course, Shortcut to Conversational.

Have conversations faster, understand people when they speak fast, and other tested tips to learn faster.

More info

This and that in Spanish are pretty straight forward – it’s just like using this, these, that, and those in English.


The only difference is there are three versions of each. First, take a look, then I’ll explain:

Cerca (close) Lejos (far)
Singular Esto, esta, este (this) Eso, esa, ese (that)
Plural Estos, estas (these) Esos, esas (those)

Notice that some end in “o”.

For singulars, when it ends in “o” is for when you don’t mention the specific object, or are speaking in general. This is the neutral version.

For plurals, it’s both the masculine and the general form (you don’t say “eses” for instance, that means excrement). There are no forms ending in “e” for plurals.

For both plural and feminine, if you are mentioning a specific object, you need to use either the feminine or masculine version. So for instance:

  • “este edificio” (this building) – “edificio” is a masculine word, so we use “este”
  • “estos edificios” (these buildings) – remember to match plural/singular
  • “esa cama” (that bed) – “cama” is a feminine word, so we use “esa”
  • “eso” (that / right) – “eso” isn’t mentioning a specific object. Instead, it’s just referring to “that” in general. It is also used as a general confirmative (like “yep”) in many countries, like Colombia.

Examples

  • Esto es está delicioso – This is delicious. (we use “esto” because we don’t mention what is delicious specifically)
  • Esta ensalada es saludable. – This salad is healthy

 

  • Esa es tu casa – That is your house.
  • Ese postre es muy dulce. – That dessert is too sweet.

 

  • Estas son mis flores – These are my flowers.
  • Estos zapatos me gustan. – I like these shoes.

 

  • ¿Esos son tus amigos? – Are those your friends?
  • Esas personas están corriendo. – Those people are running.

This and That in Spanish Practice

Let’s get in some practice. If you want practice beyond this exercise, click here and you’ll get access to our private flashcards for free.

Pick the right answer:

1. _____ carro es muy viejo.
THIS AND THAT 1

  • Esto.
  • Esta.
  • Estos.
  • Estas.
  • Ese.

2. _______ vegetales están frescos.
THIS AND THAT 2

  • Esa.
  • Esos.
  • Esas
  • Estos.
  • Estas.

3. ________ silla esta reservada para mi madre.
this and that 3

  • Esto.
  • Esta.
  • Estos.
  • Esa.
  • Esos.

4. __________ personas están esperando algo.
this and that 4

  • Esa.
  • Esos.
  • Esas.
  • Estos.
  • Estas

5. _______ langostinos se ven deliciosos.

this and that 5

  • Esas.
  • Estos.
  • Estas.
  • Esa.

Key:

  1. Ese
  2. Estos
  3. Esta
  4. Esas
  5. Estos

That’s all – if you’re confused still, leave a comment and we’ll help explain!

Want to get a free class with a BaseLang teacher? Just share this post publicly on Facebook, and tag the BaseLang FB page in your post, and we’ll give you a free 30-minute class. Details.
0

Get our FREE 7-day email course, Shortcut to Conversational

The exact strategies you need to become conversational in Spanish this year. Join the course now, before we come to our senses and charge for it!

This blog is presented by BaseLang: Unlimited Spanish Tutoring for $179 a Month. Learn more here.