"This is impossible!"
Translation:¡Esto es imposible!
"Este es imposible" was incorrect because este is masculine. Since you don't know what was impossible you don't know if it was masculine or feminine so you had to use esto which is neutral.
There are three ways to say "this" in Spanish:
Esto (neutral) Esta (feminine) Este (masculine)
NEVER. Before 1959 the pronouns had an accent to distinguish them from the adjectives. Since esto always is a pronoun, it never had an accent. See: http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/demonstratives.htm
Note: The rule used to be that the demonstrative pronouns always carried a written accent, while the demonstrative adjectives did not. But in 1959 the Real Academia Española, the institution responsible for regulating the Spanish language, ruled in its revised spelling rules Nuevas normas that the written accent is only required to remove certain ambiguities, the type of which almost never appear in written Spanish. Thus, in practice, the written accent is not required. However, it should also be noted that not everyone has jumped on the RAE bandwagon, -- including Madrid's daily newspaper El País as well as the majority of Spanish grammars that you are likely to encounter.
Thanks for this rhyme, I like it, and it finally helps me remember eso vs esto.
¿Es usted una persona cuya lengua materna es el español? Mi lengua materna es el inglés, ¿y quiero saber si su comentario se refiere al sonido de – isto – ? Caso afirmativo, entonces su mnemónico probablemente tiene más sentido para un hablante de español. Para un hablante de inglés, el sonido no se solicita la memoria. Aún así, este es un buen pedazo de consejo.
In English, such a neutral pronoun is often called a placeholder. In other words, English sentence syntax demands a word (without much meaning) has to occupy a certain spot in the sentence. In this case, the neutral pronoun occupies the place where the subject usually is. So:
This / Esto (placeholder) is / es (verb) impossible / imposible (adjective).