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Lesson 3 ~ False Cognates: really "False Friends"

My third lesson is all about false cognates, words that look and maybe even sound the same but do not mean the same. After all, many of us have gone through a moment where we think we know what the word means and try to use but in reality it means something completely different and we just end up embarrassing ourselves. Let this no longer continue. Below I have a link to a list of Spanish words that don't mean what you think they mean!

The list of words can be found here

Hope you enjoy!

Here is a link to my previous lesson: Question Words in Spanish

Here is a link to another lesson: Formal vs. Informal "You"

Here is a link to the helpful website for Spanish

In case you may not know the website above has Spanish children stories (with English translations that can be turned on/off) that are read slowly by a native Spanish speaker (you can also read them yourself, just turn that option off) along with online Spanish lessons (free), and Spanish course reviews. I hope you find it to be helpful!

Here is a list of other lessons that I can post: (like this one)

Spanish greetings

Spanish plurals

Definite and indefinite articles in Spanish

Negating statements

How to use adjectives in Spanish

Ser vs. Estar: the two kinds of "to be"

Weather vocabulary

Feelings and moods

Telling the time

Comparisons of inequality- comparing two things that are not equal

Directions in Spanish

Talking about pain with "dolor" and "tener"

¿Dónde está? or ¿Dónde hay?- Which to use when asking where something is.

I have already done lessons on Formal vs. Informal "You", Question words in Spanish, and False Cognates. All the links are posted above!

After I have done enough lessons I will do a directory post!

I hope you guys find all of this to be helpful and useful!

March 27, 2018



False cognates are words that look similar and have similar meanings, but they aren't true cognates ("relatives"). Typical examples are English "island" and Spanish "isla" or English "have" and Spanish "haber". Your list is about false friends that are true cognates, derived from Latin in both languages (in English, usually through French).

By the way, "cognate" has two cognates in Spanish, one of them a false friend: "cognado" (the same) and "cuñado" (brother-in-law).


What exactly are you trying to say?


I'm trying to say you posted a link to some false friends not false cognates :)


thank you so much spanishmasterz! This is one of my favorite things about language learning, to discover similarities and differences, and follow clues to new discoveries! great work and thank you for sharing it!

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