In a recent online conversation:

Them: Entendiste lo que tenes que hacer?
Me: Si
Them: barbaro josha

I searched Google but couldn't find anything, it sounds like a name or something, but there was no other context. Does anyone know what this means?

  • 2
    It would be helpful if you gave more context, most importantly where these people are from. "Bárbaro" is a common way of saying "awesome" in various places, for example.
    – nopaltepec
    Commented Aug 13, 2021 at 16:29
  • The text is missing a comma. It should be: "Barbaro, Josha". That can be translated as "Great, Josha". Josha understood his task and was congratulated.
    – RubioRic
    Commented Aug 13, 2021 at 19:45
  • 1
    No entendía Josha como nombre. ¿Hay algún lugar donde sea común? o ¿es una forma de decir Josh u otro nombre? 🤔
    – nopaltepec
    Commented Aug 13, 2021 at 19:49

1 Answer 1


These words are predominantly used in Argentina.

Bárbaro means good. If something is "bárbaro" it means that it is "More than fine".

  1. adj. Excelente, llamativo, magnífico. El orador estuvo bárbaro. (from RAE)

Josha requires a bit more explaining. The word was spelt josha but it was referring to the term joya. Joya means “great”, “excellent”. For example, this website describes joya as “awesome”, “right on”, and lists the expression as an essential in the Argentinian jargon. The word joya is also used to describe someone’s mood, eg: Estoy joya (“I am joya”), which means “I am happy” (compare with “I’m A-okay” or “I’m peachy”).

As for why the author wrote josha instead of joya, the term joya is predominantly used in Argentina. Argentinians tend to pronounce the Spanish "y” as a "sh" or “zh” (sheísmo), so the person used the literal pronunciation, which is usually done as a joke. Other examples of this phenomenon are:

Tweet: “Estoy shorando de la emoción 😭” (Source]

YouTube title: “Tah shoviendo con sol xD” (Source]

As you can see, this form of phonetic transcription is only done in very colloquial contexts. For more on Argentinian phonology, see Rioplatense Spanish.

  • "Barbaro joya" is an expression in Argentine? Something like "Awesome cool"? Are you sure that there is not a comma missing. "Barbaro, joya" meaning "Great, sweetheart" or something like this.
    – RubioRic
    Commented Aug 14, 2021 at 5:04
  • 1
    Do we know that the person typing the original was Argentinian?
    – mdewey
    Commented Aug 14, 2021 at 13:45
  • "Barbaro" is not just an Argentine expression,it could only be said that it originates from there (?), in fact it is also used a lot in Mexico or other parts since it is a "popular" word so to speak, and no, jewel is at no time to refer to something like "darling" or "sweetheart" Attached a fragment of a movie where someone uses the term "barbarian". In this case he says: "Vieron eso, eso es ser Barbaro" (They saw that, that is to be Barbaro).- Referring to that she is cool youtube.com/watch?v=gXSehDcFquc @RubioRic
    – alentin
    Commented Aug 17, 2021 at 15:37
  • 1
    I can't hardly understand your comment above. And I still don't get the full expression. Bárbaro can mean just "great", as stated in the DLE, and almost all Spanish speakers understand that. I don't know what exactly means "barbaro joya" and in which country is used as a expression.
    – RubioRic
    Commented Aug 17, 2021 at 15:45
  • 2
    I am sorry that you cannot understand my comments, I am not very good with English, but I felt the need to explain that "barabaro josha" does not have much science or meaning behind it, I can assume that the one who answered this simply did it in a way "lazy", some when writing do not put punctuation marks, have bad spelling or simply use the wrong spelling on purpose, such as writing like this: Instead of Que hubo (What was there) = "kiubo". Or instead of Bien (Good) = "Bn" barbaro josha = great good or great cool @RubioRic
    – alentin
    Commented Aug 17, 2021 at 16:22

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