Alguno vs Algo: adjective or pronoun or adverb ??


Tutorial on alguno/algún and algo, written by Lazarus


As an adjective, it modifies the noun it precedes, when you don't refer to anyone or anything in particular among several possible options, like 'some? for statements or 'any? for questions and conditional sentences: algunas veces (sometimes), alguna película (any movie).

It has to be 'algún? in front of masculine nouns in singular (algún hombre), or feminine singular when the noun starts with a stressed 'a? sound, like 'águila', 'hacha', 'agua'... pretty much like 'el agua'.

Used after a noun it means 'whatsoever? or '(not) at all', or simply 'none': Sin motivo alguno (for no reason at all), No hay problema alguno (There is no problem at all).

'Algunos/as? can be translated as 'several': Me comí algunas magdalenas (I eat up several muffins)

As a pronoun, it is like the adjective before the noun, but the noun is intended from the context: Han venido algunos (Some of them came), algunas son más caras que otras (some are more expensive than others). In English it has many translations:

Alguno de tus hijos = One of your sons
Quiero uno = I want one
Siempre protesta alguno = There is always one who complains


In general, in statements it means 'something', and in interrogative and conditional sentences, 'anything'.

As an adverb, it means 'a little? or 'somewhat': Estoy algo cansado (I am a bit tired). Se queja algo, pero está mejor (He complains a little, but he is better). Estoy algo más tranquilo (I am a bit more calmed)

Also, as a pronoun and followed by 'de', its meaning is similar to the adverb: it indicates 'a bit', 'part of', 'something'... referring to just a (small) fraction of a whole: algo de comer (something to eat --> not necessarily a full meal), 'algo de carne? (a bit of meat), 'algo de ruido? (a bit of noise).

updated Nov 1, 2009
posted by 00494d19

1 Answer


Let me make this simple for you.
First --- Get the book "Spanish Pronouns and Prepositions"(Practice makes Perfect series) by Dorothy Richmond. It has the answers to all your questions.

Example: 1. When they stand alone or are used to refer to a noun or other antecedent they function as pronouns: Algunos (some of them) 2. Many quantitative adjectives are not actual numbers themselves rather, they refer to an amount or have less direct manner of revealing number. Most of these words function as adjectives: Algunos platos (some plates).

  1. Algo: something; anything Alguna cosa/Algo: something Algunos/as: some (of them); any (of them) algunas veces: sometimes

Footnote: 1. & 2. from the book "Spanish Pronouns and Prepositions"(Practice makes Perfect series) by Dorothy Richmond. 3. "Learn in your Car Spanish" by Henry N. Raymond, Penton Books & CDs

updated Nov 1, 2009
posted by Walter-Campagna
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