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Episode #3

Nouns & Adjectives

I. Intro: Parts of Speech

Let’s begin by going over the main parts of speech, or in Spanish: Partes de la oración

Part of Speech

Parte de la oración

Función

Ejemplo

Noun

Sustantivo (nombre) Persona, lugar, cosa, idea Profesor, universidad, calendario, libertad

Verb

Verbo Acción, estado, condición Comunicar, comprender, escribir, ser/estar

Adjective

Adjetivo Describe un sustantivo Contento, triste, grande, pequeño

Adverb

Adverbio Describe un verbo, un adjetivo, o otro adverbio Correctamente, muy, bien, mal

II. Grammar/Vocab: Nouns & Adjectives

As you can see in the table, an adjective is a word that describes a noun. Words like natural, romántico, and honesto are adjectives. In other words, adjectives give more information.

Let’s look at the adjectives in the following sentences. The adjective is bold, and the noun that it describes is underlined.

  1. Tú eres un amigo fantástico.
  2. Ellas también son amigas fantásticas.
  3. El presidente está en la Casa Blanca.
  4. Mi madre es una persona honesta.
  5. No, gracias, yo no como comida rápida.
  • Notice anything? The adjective usually comes after the noun it describes.
  • Anything else? Adjectives agree in gender and number with the nouns and articles they describe.
1. Adjectives ending in -o have 4 forms [o, a, os, as]
El chico alto La chica alta
Los chicos altos Las chicas altas

2. Adjectives ending in -e have 2 forms [e, es]
El chico inteligente La chica inteligente
Los chicos inteligentes Las chicas inteligentes

3. Adjectives ending in a consonant have 2 forms [__, es]
El chico popular La chica popular
Los chicos populares Las chicas populares

III. Adjectives of quantity

Some adjectives usually come before the noun. One group is called “adjectives of quantity.”

Here they are:

Spanish

English

alguno some
bastante enough
cuanto how many, as much
demasiado too much
más more
menos less
ninguno no, none
poco a little
suficiente sufficient, enough
varios various, some, a few, several
todos all

IV. Possessive adjectives

Another group of adjectives, the possessive adjectives (my, your, their, etc.), always come before the noun they modify.

Spanish

English

mi my
tu* your (informal)
su your (formal), his/her
nuestro/a our
su their/your

*Note that possessive adjective tu does not have an accent mark, in contrast with the subject pronoun .

Like other adjectives, possessives agree in number:

Spanish

English

Spanish

English

Mi hermano My brother Mis hermanos My brothers
Mi hermana My sister Mis hermanas My sisters

Since nuestro ends in a vowel, it also agree in gender:

Spanish

English

Spanish

English

Nuestro padre Our father Nuestros padres Our fathers
Nuestra madre Our mother Nuestras madres Our mothers

V. El Verbo Haber

“En lugar de respuestas, hay varias preguntas.”
Instead of answers, there are many questions.

See that word hay? It’s the invariable form of a special verb in Spanish called haber that means both “there is” + “there are.” Here’s one point in Spanish where you don’t have to worry about gender or number:

Form

Examples

Hay + N (singular) Hay una isla en el mar
Hay + N (plural) Hay muchos hombres en la playa

The takeaway: Some adjectives come after the noun, some come before the noun, but all adjectives agree in gender and number with the noun they modify.