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https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35

What are your favorite Spanish expressions?

mofo35
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Hola fellow polyglots,

I am curious to know what your favorite spanish expressions are or perhaps the ones you used the most?

Some of my favorites are:

  • Echar agua al mar "something is pointless"
  • Pedir peras al olmo "To ask for the impossible"

Cheers, M

p.s: please also include the English equivalent or meaning.

3 years ago

38 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Talca
Talca
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I am fond of dar a luz = to give birth. Literally, to give light (to the baby). Very beautiful.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Indeed, very beautiful

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreRodrigues.1

"Quien mucho abarca, poco aprieta" - it is like saying that if you do lots of things at the same time, none is considered well done.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/remoonline
remoonline
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¡Nunca es tarde para aprender!

It is never too late to learn!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Zuquita

"Es mi perro y yo lo baño."

It's my dog and I will wash it. It means it is my problem and I will deal with it ... so butt out. :)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Justin-B
Justin-B
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Good one.

It reminds be of: "Si quieres el perro, acepta las pulgas."
If you want the dog, accept the fleas. (If you want/love something, accept its faults.)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Justin-B
Justin-B
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"Hasta los gatos quieren zapatos." Even cats want shoes. I think it means that you can't always get what you want. And as a bonus, it rhymes.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Louise_O

One of my favourite words is domingueando. It means "Sundaying", which in context is either putting on your Sunday best or doing the sort of relaxing activities one tends to do on a Sunday. When people ask me what my plans are for the weekend, I like to say "Estoy domingueando".

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ilmarien
Ilmarien
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Agarrarse los machos - "prepare yourself for a struggle." I like it for its bullfighting origins.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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That's a great one!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Zuquita

"Vas a llorar lagrimas de sangre."

You are going to cry tears of blood.

Okay, not the sweetest sentiment, but I love it in a telenovela when someone venomously spits this out.

Novelas are a great source of dichos (sayings or proverbs).

Here's another:

"Cuando el hambre entra por la puerta,el amor sale por la ventana."

When hunger walks through the door, love flies out the window.

Said as a warning against marrying that impossibly guapo y romantico but dirt poor man, which is a situation that comes up surprisingly often in telenovelaland.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Louise_O

No sabe ni papa -- hasn't got a clue. I love it because literally it's "he doesn't know potato either". If you don't know potato, you don't know anything!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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I like it too... Gracias

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Here's another one that I also used often

Nadie es profeta en su tierra - "No man's a prophet in his own country"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BrentPope1

I think a certain Jewish guy made that one up a couple thousand years ago. ;-)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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He was certainly a wise man ;-) Two thousands year later, I still use that expression! :)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Sin pies ni cabeza - "I can't make head or tail (of it)"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Mi casa tu casa = " My house is your house"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Tenir molta terra a L'Havana - "Long ways, long lies"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BrentPope1

So does this mean that the farther away something is (and therefore, the more difficult to confirm or debunk), it is easier for someone to be lying?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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That's right, but I think it's one of those expressions that will disappear very soon for technological and political reasons. Anyone nowadays can verify things very quickly on the internet to debunk obvious lies and Cuba is changing also, eventually people will be allowed to own land...

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Tener una rana en la garganta - "To have a frog in one's throat"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CattleRustler

"Ten cuidado, piso mojado - quizas vas a estar en tu lado"

""Qué honda güey?" (güey can be replaced with Pelon, culito, pinche pato, carnal, and many others)

but thats because I hang out with a mexicano borracho

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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How would you translate that?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CattleRustler

"Ten cuidado, piso mojado - quizas vas a estar en tu lado" be careful, wet floor - perhaps you will be on your side

""Qué honda güey?" - whats up dude

i edited my original post

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Nice!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andres_Pe

En casa de herrero, cuchillo de palo.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Please include the english translation or at least what the expression means or when to use it?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andres_Pe

"blacksmith home, wooden knife. " Means the lack of a thing, where it is supposed it must to be.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreRodrigues.1

That one would be like "In a blacksmith house, a wooden spoon is used"...you use it when you do things /or fix for others, but not for yourself.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Got it! "The shoemaker's son always goes barefoot" or as the french would say: "les cordonniers sont toujours les plus mal chaussés"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreRodrigues.1

Thanks! The version of this one for Brazilian Portuguese is "Casa de ferreiro, espeto de pau".

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BrentPope1

I think the English equivalent would be "The cobbler's children have no shoes." EDIT: Whoa. mofo35 posted this just as I was posting mine.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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I think you're right! For some reasons there are expressions that I only use in a particular language. In this case, I mainly use that expression in French, but rarely in English. Gracias for corregirme!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BrentPope1

Is "mejor seguro que siento" (or something like it) a Spanish expression?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pobrecito13

"Algo es algo dijo el calvo cuando un pelo le salió" There are other endings as well, like "cuando se encontró un peine sin puas". Meaning something is better than nothing or even when life is gloomy, any little bright spot is appreciated.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jorge4890
jorge4890
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"Llover sobre mojado" Insist too much on the same thing "Cuando el rio suena piedras trae" If a rumor about something is spread, it is possible that it may be true.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mofo35
mofo35
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Muchas Gracias Folks for all the great expressions received so far! Please keep them coming!

3 years ago