Spanish Neuter Article “Lo” – How to Use It

Spanish neuter article LO, Learn and Practice

Welcome to our grammar lesson about Spanish neuter article “lo”.

Neuter article “lo” is much less frequent in Spanish than masculine “el” and feminine “la”. However it exists, and that means the Spanish student needs to learn it 🙂

In this lesson, we will learn about how to use “lo”, providing example sentences.

At the end you’ll find an Exercise for practice.

“lo” meaning “the thing” or “the things”

The article “lo” can serve as a substitute for “la cosa” (the thing) or “las cosas” (the things).

By using “lo”, we can make some sentences shorter and more elegant:

La cosa importante es estudiar mucho.
Lo importante es estudiar mucho.
Both sentences mean “The important thing is to study a lot”. By changing “la cosa” for “lo”, the sentence becomes shorter.

La cosa más bonita es el centro de la ciudad.
Lo más bonito es el centro de la ciudad.
Both mean “The most beautiful thing is the city center”.

No entiendo las cosas que dices.
No entiendo lo que dices.
Both mean “I don’t understand what you say (the things that you say)”.

La cosa que quiero es jugar.
Lo que quiero es jugar.
Both mean “What I want (the thing that I want) is to play”.

Note: When “lo” has this use, all adjectives connected to it must be in masculine singular form.

For example:

“La cosa más bonita” becomes “lo más bonito“.

“Las cosas más bonitas” also becomes “lo más bonito“.

“lo” to emphasize a quality

We can also use “lo” before an adjective, in order to emphasize a certain quality.

In this type of sentence, after “lo” and the adjective, we must place the word “que”:

Es increíble lo inteligente que eres.
It’s incredible how intelligent you are.

Me gusta lo despacio que hablas.
I like how slow you talk.

Note: When “lo” has this use, it can be connected to feminine or plural adjectives without any problem.

For example:

Me sorprende lo buena que eres.
I’m amazed at how good you are. (talking to a woman)

No me gusta lo groseros que sois.
I don’t like how rude you guys are.

Practice

Exercise

Read the following pairs of sentences.

Fill the gaps using “lo” and whatever other words you need, so that both sentences of each pair have the same meaning:

1) Me gustan las cosas exóticas.
Me gusta ___ _____.

2) Hemos hecho la cosa más difícil del mundo.
Hemos hecho ___ _____ _______ del mundo.

3) El anillo es la cosa más cara en esta joyería.
El anillo es ___ _____ _______ en esta joyería.

4) ¡Es la mejor cosa!
¡Es ___ _______ !

5) A Francisco le interesan todas las cosas religiosas.
A Francisco le interesa ______ ____ ________ .

Solutions:
1) lo exótico
2) lo más difícil
3) lo más caro
4) lo mejor
5) todo lo religioso

A different “lo”: direct object pronoun “lo”

This lesson has been about neuter article “lo”.

But there is another “lo” in Spanish, which is not an article, but a direct object pronoun.

Click here to learn about Direct Object Pronouns!

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