"Nieto" is a grandson (and "Nieta" presumably a granddaughter).

"Bisnieto" is a great-grandson (and "bisnieta" no doubt a great-granddaughter).

"Bis" means "encore".

So is a grandchild an "encore" grandchild?

I think of an "encore" that a musical band may perform as a sort of a "bonus" set (one ore more "extra" songs to finish a concert, if all has gone well, or to reward an appreciative audience).

Is the sense of "bisnieto" that, although one may expect to have children and grandchildren - nothing too unusual in that - to have great-grandchildren is something of a "bonus"?

  • What is the difference between a grandson and a grandchild?
    – Jose Luis
    Apr 13, 2016 at 15:00
  • A grandchild can be either male or female. Apr 13, 2016 at 15:02
  • Then the correct answer is NOT bisnieto...
    – Jose Luis
    Apr 13, 2016 at 19:53
  • No; how could it be? That would not answer the question at all. Apr 13, 2016 at 20:45

2 Answers 2


Bis, bi means two or twice; bisnieto means, roughly, twice the grandchild. I don't think bisnieto has the meaning of a bonus.

From Definiciona:

Este vocablo en su etimología esta compuesto del prefijo latino “bi” dos y del latín popular “nepta”, a su vez del latín “neptis” que quiere decir nieto.


Bis comes from the Latin meaning twice. So in some countries you shout it to get what in the UK you would shout encore for. So it is twice a grand child not an encore grand child.

  • Do you have some examples of countries? That is very interesting. Jan 24, 2018 at 4:38
  • Well @aparente001 I suspect this is a bit off-topic, but French, Italian, Portuguese seem to use the word bis in that sense.
    – mdewey
    Jan 24, 2018 at 11:56

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