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Spanish Adjectives

Spanish Adjectives
on March 24, 2017

Spanish adjectives are different from English adjectives in that they have to agree in number and gender with the nouns they modify. So it is very important to know the gender of the noun to use adjectives correctly.

For example:                   An old compass                  =                   una brujula vieja

Luckily, the rules for masculine / feminine and plural / singular of Spanish adjectives are very similar to the rules of nouns. The masculine form of the adjective ends in -o, the feminine form ends in -a, and the plurals are -os and -as respectively. 

For example:                   White dog                  =                   perro blanco

For example:                   White dogs                   =                   perros blancos

For example:                   Red rose                   =                   rosa roja

For example:                   Red roses                   =                   rosas rojas

If the masculine singular of the Spanish adjective ends in -e, the feminine singular is the same as the masculine, and the plural for both genders is formed by adding -s. 

For example:                   Intelligent student =                   alumno/a inteligente

For example:                   Intelligent students =                   alumnus/as inteligentes

If the masculine adjective ends in a consonant, the feminine singular form is the same, and the plural of both genders is formed by adding -es.

For example:                   A difficult language =                   un idioma(m) difícil                                   

For example:                   Difficult languages =                                     idiomas dificiles

For example:                   A difficult rule                       =                                     una regla( f) difícil                                                     

For example:                   Difficult rules                     =                                     reglas dificiles

Try to come up with adjectives for the following nouns. Remember to make them coincide in gender and number with the nouns.

  1. Mobil (mobile phone) (masculine)
  2. Chaqueta (jacket)(feminine)
  3. Calcetines (socks) (masculine)
  4. Joyas (jewels) (feminine)

Notice the order of words too. Spanish adjectives generally follow their nouns; they do not precede nouns as in English, or if they do, meaning is different.

For example:                   Mi amiga vieja.                     =                                     My friend is old.

For example:                   Mi vieja amiga.                     =                                     I have known my friend for a long time.


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