Easy Learning French

Demonstrative adjectives: ce, cette, cet and ces - Easy Learning Grammar French

What is a demonstrative adjective?
A demonstrative adjective is one of the words this, that, these and those used with a noun in English to point out a particular thing or person, for example, this woman, that dog.
  • In French you use ce to point out a particular thing or person. Like all adjectives in French, ce changes its form depending on whether you are referring to a noun that is masculine or feminine, singular or plural.
 MasculineFeminineMeaning
Singularce (cet)cettethis
that
Pluralcescesthese
those
Tipcet is used in front of masculine singular nouns which begin with
a vowel and most words beginning with
h.
cet oiseauthis/that bird
cet hôpitalthis/that hospital
  • ce comes BEFORE the noun it refers to.
Combien coûte ce manteau?How much is this/that coat?
Comment s’appelle cette entreprise?What’s this/that company called?
Ces livres sont très intéressants.These/Those books are very interesting.
Ces couleurs sont jolies.These/Those colours are pretty.
  • If you want to emphasize the difference between something that is close to you and something that is further away, you can add:
  • -ci on the end of the noun for things that are closer
Prends cette valise-ci.Take this case.
  • -là on the end of the noun for things that are further away
Est-ce que tu reconnais cette personne-là?Do you recognize that person?
Key points
  • The adjective ce corresponds to this and that in the singular, and these and those in the plural.
  • The forms are ce and cette in the singular, and ces in the plural. cet is used with masculine singular nouns beginning with a vowel and most words beginning with h.
  • You can add -ci on the end of the noun for things that are closer, or -là for things that are further away, to emphasize the difference between them.

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