Possession and Pointing Out

This chapter introduces the words used to indicate possession, i.e. whose something is, or to whom it belongs (my, his, mine, etc.), and to point things out (‘demonstratives’ like this, that, these).

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Describing Possession in Spanish, the equivalent in English of adding ’s , is to use the preposition ‘of’( de ) before the ‘possessor’ – the subject , so ‘of the university’ translates as de la universidad. 

In the case of masculine nouns, because the definite article el begins with a vowel, the article is shortened to del  so ‘the lecturer’s book’ is el libro del professor and  ‘the student’s book’ becomes el libro del estudiante. This contraction of article also happens with ‘to the’: a + el = al, so ‘to the cinema’ is al cine.   

As in English, each of the personal pronouns has their possessive equivalent, and like the ‘short’ and ‘long’ forms in English, e.g. my and mine, our and ours, Spanish does pretty much the same. In addition, these must agree in number and gender with the object being possessed, as you’ll see below, with examples to show how they work in a phrase or sentence.

Possessives – with examples

My/mine and our(s)

miél es mi entrenador – he is my coach

mis¿Donde estan mis libros? – where are my books?

el mío / míoel coche es el mío – the car is mine ; es el coche mío, no el tuyo – it’s my car, not yours (for emphasis)

la mía / a

los míos / las míasTus niñas están aquí, pero las mías han partido. – Your children are here, but mine have left.

nuestroAquí es nuestro hotel – Here is our hotel.



nuestrasnuestras habitaciones estan en el piso terceroour rooms are on the third floor.

el nuestro / la nuestra

los nuestros / las nuestrasestos son los nuestros – these are ours.

His/her(s), their(s) and formal ‘your(s)’

sume ha invitado a su fiesta el viernes- he’s invited me to his party.

Gracias por invitarme a su fiesta, Señor. (polite)

sussus otros amigos estan invitados a la fiesta también – his other friends are invited to the party too.

el suyo¿El piso grande es el suyo o de sus padres? – Is the big flat his or his parents’?

la suya¿Es la cocina de su hijo mas pequeño que la suya? Is your son’s kitchen, smaller than yours?(polite)

los suyostodos los regalos son los suyos– all the presents are his (or yours, polite).

las suyas – … y también son las suyas las botellas de vino. … and the bottles of wine are his, too.

Your(s) (sing. and pl.)

tu tu trabajo es muy duroyour job is very hard

tusson tus zapatos – they’re your shoes

el tuyo

la tuyaTengo mi bici ¿Cual es la tuya? – I’ve got my bike. Which one’s yours?

los tuyos

las tuyas

vuestroes vuestro coche allí – That’s your car over there.




el vuestro / la vuestra¿Esta casa es la vuestra? – Is this house yours?

los vuestros / las vuestras

Pointing out – Demonstratives

Demonstratives are words used to point out (demonstrate) particular items (nouns), i.e. words like this, that or these.  They always must be in the appropriate gender (i.e the genders must ‘agree’) for the item(s) being pointed out, and they go before the noun..  There is also a particular word for indicating something which exists or existed in a more distant place or time (in the past).

Masculine demonstratives

This – este

That – ese

That (distant) – aquel

These – estos

Those – esos

Those (far away) – aquellos

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Neuter demonstratives

[This is used for more abstract ideas / concepts rather than objects, or situations where you don’t know what something is.]

This – esto¿Que es esto? – what is this?

That – esoNo puedo practicar y por eso no hablo bien español. – I can’t practice and because of that I don’t speak Spanish well.

That (distant) – aquelloViajaba mucho cuando estaba joven, y aquello ha sido un experiencia muy util. – I travelled a lot when I was young, and that‘s been a very useful experience.

Feminine demonstratives

This – esta

That – esa

That (distant) – aquella

These – estas

Those – esas

Those (far away) – aquellas

Dr. Seuss

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