Everything You Need to Know About Spanish Adjectives

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In the vibrant world of the Spanish language, adjectives play a crucial role in conveying meaning and adding richness to our communication. I mean, just think of everything you can do with Spanish adjectives!

  • You can describe an object you’ve lost so that other people can help you find it:

“Es una cartera pequeña y azul” (It’s a small blue wallet).

  • You can describe how you feel when seeing your loved one after a long time:

“Estoy tan feliz de verte” (I’m so happy to see you).

  • And you can even prevent someone from taking what’s yours!

¡Ese teléfono es mío! (That phone is mine!)

See how powerful Spanish adjectives are?

In this article, we will explore the intricacies of Spanish adjectives, including the different endings they take, and how to write Spanish adjectives of nationality.

With this knowledge, we hope you’ll be better equipped to express yourself with more confidence and avoid common Spanish grammar mistakes.

So let’s get started!

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Spanish Adjectives: Agreement with Nouns

One of the unique aspects of Spanish adjectives is that they need to agree with the noun (or pronoun) they describe in both gender and number. This is one of the biggest differences between English and Spanish adjectives.

Consider the following examples:


The boy is nice.

The boys are nice.

The girl is nice.

The girls are nice.


El chico es simpático

Los chicos son simpáticos

La chica es simpática

Las chicas son simpáticas

One English ending vs. four different Spanish ones, isn’t that unbelievable?

But never fear. All you have to do is follow a few simple rules and you’ll be a master of Spanish adjective agreement in no time:

Masculine nouns

Let’s take a look at the most common endings for each category:

Most adjectives that describe masculine nouns end in -o in the singular form and -os in the plural form.

For example, “el libro rojo” (the red book) and “los libros rojos” (the red books).

Feminine Nouns

Spanish adjectives that describe feminine nouns typically end in -a in the singular form and -as in the plural form.

For instance, “la casa blanca” (the white house) and “las casas blancas” (the white houses).

Gender-Neutral Nouns

In Spanish, there are also gender-neutral nouns. Adjectives that modify these nouns maintain the same form for both masculine and feminine.

An example would be “un niño inteligente” (an intelligent child) and “una niña inteligente” (an intelligent girl).

Spanish adjectives study

Spanish Adjectives of Nationality

Another noticeable difference between English and Spanish adjectives is how they are used to describe people’s nationalities.

In English, we say that someone is “American” or “British”, while in Spanish, we would say that someone is “americano” or “británico”. As you can see, Spanish adjectives of nationality (called gentilicios) are always written in lowercase.

However, there are some similarities too. Just like their English counterparts, Spanish adjectives of nationality can be grouped according to their different endings.

Some of the most common are:

  1. -no/a:  chileno/a, mexicano/a, argentino/a, boliviano/a,
  2. -eño/a: puertorriqueño/a, madrileño/a, hondureño/a
  3. ense: canadiense, londinense, nicaragüense, parisiense

Types of Spanish Adjectives

As we said at the beginning, Spanish adjectives can be used for many different things. You can use them to describe objects, talk about possession, and compare people with one another.

Let’s explore some of the main categories so it’s easier for you to remember how and when to use them.

Descriptive Spanish Adjectives

These are adjectives that describe the qualities of a noun. They are used to give more information about the color, shape, size, origin, etc. of something.

For example, “el hombre alto” (the tall man) or “las camisas amarillas” (the yellow shirts).

Here are some useful descriptive Spanish adjectives to remember:

Categories Adjectives (English) Adjectives (Spanish)
Colors Red Rojo
  Blue Azul
  Green Verde
  Yellow Amarillo
  Orange Naranja
  Purple Morado
  Pink Rosa
  Brown Marrón
  White Blanco
  Black Negro
Physical Appearance Tall Alto
  Short Bajo
  Slim Delgado
  Curvy Curvilíneo
  Muscular Musculoso
  Beautiful Hermoso
  Handsome Guapo
  Ugly Feo
Feelings Happy Feliz
  Sad Triste
  Angry Enojado
  Excited Emocionado
  Nervous Nervioso
  Surprised Sorprendido
  Bored Aburrido
  Confused Confundido
States Tired Cansado
  Sleepy Somnoliento
  Busy Ocupado
  Stressed Estresado
  Calm Tranquilo
  Sick Enfermo
  Healthy Sano


Demonstrative Adjectives

These Spanish adjectives are used to point out or identify specific people or things. They indicate proximity or distance in relation to the speaker. Here’s a chart showcasing the different forms:

Demonstrative Adjectives Singular Masculine Singular Feminine Plural Masculine Plural Feminine
This Este Esta Estos Estas
That Ese Esa Esos Esas
That (over there) Aquel Aquella Aquellos Aquellas

Possessive Adjectives

As their name indicates, possessive adjectives indicate ownership or possession. Like when you warn your sister not to eat your food in the fridge.

Like all Spanish adjectives, they agree in gender and number with the noun they modify.

Here they are:

Possessive Adjectives Singular Masculine Singular Feminine Plural Masculine Plural Feminine
My Mi Mi Mis Mis
Mine Mío Mía Míos Mías
Your (informal) Tu Tu Tus Tus
Yours (informal) Tuyo Tuya Tuyos Tuyas
Your (formal) Su Su Sus Sus
Yours (formal) Suyo Suya Suyos Suyas
Our Nuestro Nuestra Nuestros Nuestras
Ours Nuestro Nuestra Nuestros Nuestras
Your (plural) Vuestro Vuestra Vuestros Vuestras
Yours (plural) Vuestro Vuestra Vuestros Vuestras


Comparative and Superlative Spanish Adjectives

In Spanish, we use comparative and superlative adjectives to compare or highlight the degree of a characteristic.

But, what is the difference between comparative and superlative forms?

Comparative Adjectives: These are used to compare two nouns or describe a noun in relation to another.

For example: Juan es más alto que Pedro. (Juan is taller than Pedro.)

más + adjective + que

(more + adjective + than)

Superlative Adjectives: Superlative adjectives express the highest or extreme degree of a quality.

For example: Juan es el más alto del grupo. (Juan is the tallest of the group.)

el + más/menos + adjective

(the + most/least + adjective)

Irregular comparative and superlative adjectives

It’s important to note that some adjectives have irregular forms for the comparative and superlative.

  • Bueno (good) becomes mejor (better) in the comparative and el/la mejor (the best) in the superlative.
  • Malo (bad) becomes peor (worse) in the comparative and el/la peor (the worst) in the superlative.

To sum up, Spanish adjectives are versatile tools that allow us to describe, identify, and compare in a vibrant and expressive language. Understanding their agreement with nouns, the different types of adjectives, and the rules for forming comparative and superlative forms will greatly enhance your ability to communicate and express yourself in Spanish.

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So go ahead, embrace the power of adjectives, and add depth and precision to your Spanish conversations!

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