According to the examples given on the page about demonstrative pronouns on the Span¡shd!ct website, the rule is given that "they all must [match] the nouns they replace in gender and number". This is also clear from the examples provided on that page. Most of examples are pretty straightforward, where the demonstrative pronouns are used as a direct replacement for a missing noun.

However, there is this example: "Aquel es el Gran Cañón".

In the Spanish course provided by Babbel, something called "neutral demonstrative pronouns" is taught. It is behind a paywall, but if you have a subscription, navigate to this lesson: Grammar » Nouns and pronouns » The neutral demonstrative pronouns.

According to Babbel, when a demonstrative pronoun is used in this contex, it does not match the gender (there is no plural examples), so we have:

Aquello es un pájaro. (not "Aquel")
Aquello es una playa. (Not "Aquella")
Eso es una planta. (Not "Esa")

Below is a screenshot of this page in Babbel:

enter image description here

So which form is correct:

Aquel es el Gran Cañón.


Aquello es el Gran Cañón

  • it seems to me that you should find a better spanish course
    – Iria
    Feb 17, 2020 at 13:27

1 Answer 1


Both are correct, but they have slightly different meanings. You'd say

Aquel es el Gran Cañón.

when the person you are talking to already knows it's a canyon. You can almost consider "aquel" short for "aquel cañón", as in:

That one is the Grand Canyon.

On the other hand,

Aquello es el Gran Cañón.

conveys the meaning that the person you are talking to doesn't necessarily know it's a canyon. Maybe they haven't even noticed it yet. In English, you'd say:

That is the Grand Canyon.

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