Questions tagged [vocabulario]

Significado de una palabra, discusión de su significado según el contexto o vocabulario específico sobre un tema. // Meaning of a word, discussion of its meaning according to context or specific vocabulary on a topic.

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48 votes
11 answers
53k views

Is there a difference between "español" and "castellano"? // ¿Hay alguna diferencia entre "español" y "castellano"?

I always thought the two could be used interchangeably (meaning "the Spanish language"). But I recently got into an argument with someone where they insisted there was a difference (although I didn't ...
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40 votes
4 answers
4k views

Question words: "qué" versus "cuál"

English Often "qué" is translated to English as "what" and "cuál" is translated as "which." However, I know that this is not always the case. Here are some examples. (Please correct me if I am wrong.)...
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12 votes
5 answers
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¿Cuál es la palabra para algo que no se sabe cómo decir?

En inglés para referirse a algo que no tiene nombre o que no se sabe cómo decirlo, tenemos varias palabras: thing --> What is that thing on the wall? thingy --> How does this thingy work? thingamajig ...
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15 votes
9 answers
2k views

Are there any words that have opposite regional meanings?

Following in the footsteps of EL&U, are there any words that have opposite meanings in different Spanish-speaking regions? We are looking for words that are the same, but have different meanings ...
10 votes
5 answers
554 views

How to say 'Does it come with...?' like at a restaurant

Today I was ordering at the local taqueria and I wanted to ask whether my meal came with chips. The verbatim translation would use the verb 'venir', something like "viene con chips", but this seems ...
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6 votes
3 answers
3k views

¿Qué empieza por la letra "F" y se parece a una bombilla?

Hace algunas semanas unos amigos nos prestaron su casa para pasar unos días. En la nevera, vi la chuleta de sonidos iniciales (supongo que alguno de los niños está aprendiendo español). La imagen de ...
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3 votes
4 answers
12k views

Confused over "vacilar"

While browsing a few Spanish language forums today, I came across this: Un amigo y yo estábamos comentando sobre una foto de nosotros en facebook - de hace tiempo... Otro amigo pensaba que quizás ...
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2 votes
2 answers
269 views

What repetitions similar to "mero mero" exist in Spanish? That is, repetition of a word to convey additional meaning

I love the phrase mero mero, meaning top banana (e.g. "No pierdas el tiempo, pide cita de una vez con el mero mero"). I have a vague idea I know some more phrases like this, with the same word ...
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13 votes
6 answers
32k views

Determining gender of words ending in "e"

When learning Spanish, there are basic rules taught about word gender: words ending in o are usually masculine, words ending in a are usually feminine. What about words ending in e? Are there any ...
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19 votes
3 answers
19k views

"Vegetable": verdura vs. vegetal

What is the difference between verduras and vegetales? In what situations can one be used as a translation for "vegetables" and the other cannot?
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21 votes
1 answer
40k views

¿Cuál es el origen de los nombres de los números?

¿De dónde vienen las palabras para nombrar a los números? En especial estoy interesado en el origen de las palabras 'once', 'doce', 'trece', 'catorce' y 'quince'. Usamos un sistema numérico de base ...
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16 votes
1 answer
8k views

Words for "East" and "West" in Spanish?

The words I learned when beginning Spanish for east and west are 'este' and 'oeste', which are basically cognates of their English equivalents. But I've been told that there are other words to denote ...
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11 votes
8 answers
45k views

What are the different words for "beer"?

In Mexico, besides cerveza we call beer the following: cheve chela pisto (anything with alcohol) bironga helada fría These are used informally. Are there any other words used to address beer in ...
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10 votes
3 answers
27k views

"Gafas" vs "anteojos" vs "lentes" vs "espejuelos" in Mexican Spanish

Four different words, same meaning. Both according to Wiktionary as well as Google Images. Which one's preferred in regular speech in Mexico? I don't want to know what official dictionaries or RAE say....
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5 votes
7 answers
34k views

Most accurate translation of "possum"

What is the most universal Spanish word to describe a possum? What regional variations exist? Does the translation refer specifically to the same animal as the English word, or does it cover a larger ...
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23 votes
10 answers
16k views

What is the symbol "&" called in Spanish?

The symbol & is a representation of the Latin word et (see DPD, Appendix 4). Wikipedia claims that the symbol itself is called et; however, the DRAE's entry for et doesn't list the symbol as a ...
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7 votes
3 answers
1k views

Antiguo corte de pelo "valcarra"

El tratamento de los nuevos soldados en California por 1820 era, según José María Amador, así: Después de filiado el recluta le hacían tupé y valcarra. El tupé era que le afeitaban toda la mitad ...
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6 votes
1 answer
369 views

¿Por qué "hortera" es, en Madrid, el apodo del mancebo de ciertas tiendas de mercader?

Hortera es adj. despect. coloq. Vulgar y de mal gusto. Apl. a pers., u. t. c. s. f. Escudilla o cazuela de palo. m. En Madrid, apodo del mancebo de ciertas tiendas de mercader. ...
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6 votes
7 answers
10k views

What does "se trata de" mean?

In my reading, I've run across several forms of "se trata de", and dictionaries haven't been much help. For example: eran todos hombres libres y se trataba de un feudo feliz y prospero si ...
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6 votes
1 answer
1k views

Usage of ora vs ahora

Extracto de Desde el tronco de un ombú Ora enseñando los blancos dientes o dilatando las narices ... Which is translated as: Now showing his white teeth and flaring nostrils ... Is "ora" a ...
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4 votes
3 answers
625 views

Translating "to wind up (doing something)"

In informal English, we use the phrase "to wind up" to describe the final state of a situation, after all is said and done. For example: How did you wind up moving to Kansas after growing up in ...
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4 votes
7 answers
739 views

Translating "each other's" in Spanish

I know there are several approximate ways to convey the sense of "each other" in Spanish, some of them being entre ellos, uno al otro, and even mutuamente. However, I am struggling to turn this ...
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3 votes
2 answers
2k views

¿Tiniebla o Tinieblas?

Yo sé que tinieblas significa oscuridad o algo semejante. Mi pregunta es: ¿siempre se usa esa palabra en la forma plural? En mi diccionario también aparece tiniebla, pero nunca lo he escuchado de esa ...
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18 votes
6 answers
44k views

What is the difference between allí and ahí ("there")?

English What is the difference between allí and ahí? Is there any difference in pronunciation between the two? Are there any contexts where one is correct and one is wrong, or are they completely ...
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11 votes
3 answers
122k views

What does it mean when a girl says "te quiero" in this context?

I've been... seeing this girl for about half a year. We're not officially together, but we're pretty playful and there's a lot of flirting. We like each other.. She speaks fluent english but is a ...
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8 votes
4 answers
5k views

List of most commonly used Spanish words

When learning vocabulary in a new language, it is useful to focus on very commonly used words first. Are there any resources online (or in print) that give a list of the most frequently occurring ...
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8 votes
1 answer
4k views

"Se" and "le" with "usted", but always "te" with "tú"

Why do we say te digo [a ti] / le digo [a usted] but no te preocupes [tú] / no se preocupe [usted] ? Aren't these equal in terms of grammar? If so, why with "tú" in both cases it's "te", but ...
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17 votes
11 answers
58k views

How might you say a child is "cute" in Spanish?

Suppose you see a mother with a laughing little 2-year-old. In English, we might exclaim, "how cute!" I've had trouble saying this in Spanish. The word "cute" means something like "beautiful", but it ...
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16 votes
5 answers
3k views

How to translate 'to become?' (hacerse, ponerse, convertirse en, etc.)

I've heard several different words used for 'to become' in Spanish. Obviously sometimes there are specific verbs to use, like 'enfadarse' means to become angry, but often you need to use a verb that ...
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11 votes
3 answers
33k views

What is the difference between "por siempre" and "para siempre" to say "forever"?

I have seen "forever" translated as both por siempre and para siempre. What is the difference? Are there contexts where you must use one or the other?
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10 votes
1 answer
2k views

¿Cómo se llama (por regiones) a las notas que se llevan escondidas para copiar en los exámenes?

Viendo los comentarios que los usuarios han ido aportando en ¿Por qué llamamos “chuleta” a las notas que se llevan para copiar en los exámenes? he decidido crear una pregunta para listar todas las ...
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9 votes
2 answers
5k views

Usage of "ver(se)" for "to seem/look" (te ves, se te ve, te veo, etc.)

The verb ver can be used in a few different constructions to convey how something looks or seems: Te ves bonita. Se te ve mal. Te veo bien. For the reflexive constructions, the WordReference entry ...
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7 votes
2 answers
188 views

Let's take a relay bus ride through the world! What are some regional terms for 'bus' in Spanish?

Inspired by a recent question about jardineras (¿Por qué los autobuses de los aeropuertos se llaman "jardineras"?): Let's have a parade of buses from different regions. Add your ...
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15 votes
2 answers
3k views

¿Es correcto usar «amarizar» o «amartizar» para aterrizar en Marte?

En español, existe un verbo para describir la acción de aterrizar en la Luna: «alunizar». Siguiendo esa misma idea, ¿se puede decir «amarizar» o «amartizar» para una nave que aterriza en Marte?
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13 votes
8 answers
143k views

Congratulations: should I use "felicidades" or "felicitaciones"?

English I have heard both ¡Felicidades! and ¡Felicitaciones! as translations of the interjection, "Congratulations!" What is the difference between the two, and when is each used? Español He ...
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12 votes
2 answers
16k views

Armpit: sobaco vs. axila

"Armpit" in English can be translated as either sobaco or axila in Spanish. Is each term used in different regions, or are they both used across the Spanish-speaking world? What is the difference, or ...
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11 votes
1 answer
904 views

Plural form of compound words

The plural form of compound words in Spanish is not an easy matter. If the compound word already has its final element in plural form, then the plural form is the same as the singular one: for example,...
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9 votes
1 answer
3k views

How should I discuss my wife's due date?

How do I tell people when my wife's due date is? I usually say something like "el bebé se debe nacer el cuatro de junio" but I don't know if that's the correct way to say it.
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9 votes
4 answers
699 views

Usage of the word acullá

WordReference translates acullá as "yonder." Is this a word that was only used in the past, or is it still used in modern Spanish today? If so, what regions does it appear in and how is it used?
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8 votes
2 answers
8k views

¿Cómo expresar "sympathy" o "condolence" en español?

Ya sé que esta pregunta es un poco general, así que voy a tratar de especificar: Digamos que un pariente de un amigo murió. ¿Cuáles son algunas palabras/frases que yo podría usar? ¿O que escribiría en ...
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5 votes
3 answers
25k views

¿Qué propósito tiene el acento en una pregunta? (dónde, qué, cuándo, etc.)

He aprendido palabras como donde, cuando, que y como que se escribe sin acento en algunos casos. Pero se escribe esas palabras (y otras más) con acento cuando están usadas en una pregunta y algunos ...
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5 votes
3 answers
2k views

What is the difference among "niebla", "neblina" and "bruma"?

All three seem to mean fog or mist. Is there any regional difference in usage? Or do they actually stand for slightly different things?
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4 votes
1 answer
1k views

Words for "to encourage": alentar, animar, fomentar

In English, "to encourage" seems to have at least two uses: to suggest that someone should do something (e.g. "He encouraged me to find a new guitar teacher.") to give confidence or hope to someone (...
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3 votes
2 answers
4k views

What is the difference between "cigarrillo", "cigarro" and "puro"?

I have translated "cigar" into Spanish. There are three translations for that. cigarrillo cigarro puro Hypothesis: Spanish people told me that cigarillo and cigarro are the same. And that ...
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  • 839
3 votes
3 answers
280 views

What are the Spanish words for North and South and how are they different?

Inspired by this question Words for "East" and "West" in Spanish? my question is simply to ask the same but for North and South which beginners are taught are norte and sur. ...
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  • 4,877
3 votes
5 answers
5k views

Spanish for "link"

While listening to a podcast from SpanishPod recently, I came across this section where they were discussing the Spanish for various computer-related terms and one of the hosts gave liga as the ...
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  • 5,241
2 votes
4 answers
4k views

What is the best way to refer to those of Spanish descent or language?

In English there are several ways to refer to people who speak Spanish or are from a Spanish-speaking country: Hispanic, Latin, Latino, Chicano, Spanish-speaking, etc. What equivalent terms exist in ...
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20 votes
7 answers
4k views

Translation of "bug" to Spanish

What is the best way to translate "bug", as in a misfeature of a computer program or device? Google translate offers a few options, none of which quite seem to fit, except the term itself: bug &...
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12 votes
4 answers
2k views

Meaning of "todito"

In the book Doña Perfecta, there is the dialogue: ¿Y viene mucho acá? Toditos los días. Nos acompaña mucho... What does "todito" mean? I have a few theories: The same as "todo". Less ...
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  • 253
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

Correct terminology for male/female animals

How do I speak about my pet rats in Spanish? Firstly, do I understand correctly that "rata" means "rat" and "ratón" means "mouse"? I also realize that "rato" means "a short while," so does that mean ...
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