Skip links
Published on: Grammar Bites

Learn the difference between ‘cualquiera’ & ‘cualesquiera’

Cualquier, cualquiera and cualesquiera are words that we use to refer to a non-specific person or thing. These words can act as adjectives or pronouns.

Note that these words won’t always have a perfect equivalent in English: 

Cualquiera:

1. It’s an adjective that can follow a singular, masculine or feminine noun:

  • Pásame un libro CUALQUIERA. Hand me over any book. (It doesn’t matter which book you hand me over.)
  • Ustedes tienen que elegir una fecha CUALQUIERA para el examen. You have to choose a date for the exam. (Any date will be fine).

2. If ‘cualquiera’ goes in front of a singular, masculine or feminine noun, we use the short form ‘cualquier’. In this case, ‘cualquier’ is also acting as an adjective:

  • Pásame CUALQUIER libro. Hand me over any book.
  • Ustedes tienen que elegir CUALQUIER fecha para el examen. You have to choose a date for the exam.

3. We use ‘cualquiera’ as a singular pronoun when it’s replacing both the adjective and the noun:

  • – ¿Cuál de estas blusas quieres que te preste? Which of these blouses do you want to borrow?
  • – Por favor, préstame CUALQUIERA porque todas parecen bonitas. Please let me borrow any of them; they all look nice.
  • – ¿Cuál color me queda bien con este pantalón negro? Which color do you think works best with these black pants?
  • – Te queda bien CUALQUIERA porque son colores frescos. Any of these colors will work because they’re all cool colors.

4. We can use use ‘cualquiera’ as a synonym of the phrase TODO EL MUNDO (everybody/everyone):

  • CUALQUIERA puede usar una computadora. Any one can use a computer.
  • TODO EL MUNDO puede usar una computadora. Everyone can use a computer.

5. On occasion, we can use UN / UNA CUALQUIERA to indicate that something or someone is not important. We have to be careful with this use because it has a negative connotation; ie, it’s not polite.

Cualesquiera:

It’s a plural pronoun. Although we don’t use this pronoun often in conversation, you can find it regularly in texts:

  • ¿Qué asientos debemos escoger en el cine? Which seats should we get at the movies?
  • CUALESQUIERA que escojan, está bien para mí. (En este caso, se refiere a los asientos). Whatever seats you choose are fine by me.

As we said, we don’t use ‘cualesquiera’ in conversation frequently, so the most common answer would be:

  • CUALQUIERA que escojan, está bien para mí. (Esto es más común que la forma plural). Any seat you choose is fine by me.
Activities for private students & members: 

This content is locked

Login To Unlock The Content!

R E A D Y  T O  L E A R N ?

If you are looking to learn Spanish quickly or you want to find the best way to learn to speak Spanish, at Easy Español we can help you with the best program to learn Spanish. Whether you are a total beginner or have some previous knowledge, you will notice immediate progress with the quickest way to learn Spanish

No matter your goal, learning Spanish will be easier than ever with one of our intensive online Spanish courseswhether you want to learn Spanish in 30 days or in 3 months. You will discover a unique method of live Spanish classes online with the easiest way to learn Spanish to speak Spanish fluently once and for all.