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- Me tiene que subir el sueldo señor: hay cuatro grandes
empresas que andan detrás de mí.
- ¿Ah, sí? ¿y se puede saber qué empresas son esas?
- La de la luz, la del agua, la del gas y la del teléfono.
- You have to increase my salary sir: there are four big
companies that are after me!!!
- Yes? May I know which ones?
- The light company, the water company, the gas company
and the telephone one.
La Influencia española
en “los EE. UU.”
Why Spanish Uses ‘EE. UU.’ as the Abbreviation for ‘United States'
origin of ...
It is the rope cowboys (los vaqueros) use: it is derived from the word "lazo".
It is derived from "estampida" (the mad rush of a crowd).
It is derived from from "rodear" meaning "to surround".
state of Florida was given its name by the Spanish navigator
de León when he landed there on
Easter Sunday, "Pascua
Florida", April 2nd
1513: April 2nd is a legal holiday in Florida.
state of Colorado gets its name the red colour of its soil: the name
chosen for the State by Congress
The red letter C on the state flag represents the red colour of the soil.
state of Montana gets its name from the word for mountain,
due to its numerous mountain ranges.
Nevada (snow capped)
The State of Nevada is named after its snowcapped mountains.
It means mountain range as in
"Sierra Nevada" in the United
States and "Sierra
Madre" in Mexico.
It refers to both a county and a city in New Mexico. They got their name from the
Spanish phrase "la santa fe" meaning "the
The original name given in 1582 to the city was la Cuidad de la Santa Fe de San
Francisco, "the City of the Holy Faith of Saint Francis".
This was later shortened to Santa Fe.
Los Alamos (the popular trees)
old fort in Texas was named Los
Alamos after a grove
of cottonwood trees
(related to the popular tree) by the fort.
Saint Junipero Serra
This Spanish Franciscan
missionary priest, Father Junipero Serra (Miguel
Jose Serra) from Majorca, Spain opened up the South-Western part of the
He established the Franciscan
missions in the Sierra Gorda, a mission in Baja
California, and the first nine
Spanish missions in California from San Diego to
There is a statue in his honour in the state legislature in Sacremento, California.
He was beatified by Pope John
Paul II in 1988 and canonized (made a saint) by
Pope Francis in 2015.
(The Royal Spanish Academy)
- created in 1713
- given royal approval in 1714
- 41 full members: writers, intellectuals and linguists
- its motto: ‘limpia, fija y da esplendor’ (clean, preserve, and give splendor) to the
- its first dictionary in six volumes, published between 1726 and 1739: the single-
volume edition was published in 1780 (The currect edition: the 23rd.)
(the Catalan language)
It's a romance language with a rich literary heritage dating back to the 12th century.
It's related both to Spanish and to the Occitan language of southern France.
the middle ages Catalan was spoken outside modern Catalonia, due to
military expansion. Castilian became more prominent with the political
union of Castille and Aragon.
being banned in the media and public life under Franco,
Catalan is now
many writers, including
some of the most prestigious in Spain,
publish first in Catalan and then, in Castilian.
Catalonia, the language is nowadays spoken in the Balearic Islands,
Andorra, in the Roussillon area, southern France, and in Alghero, Sardinia.
the Basque language of North Western Spain spoken by over
half a million
people in the Western Pyrenees including South Western France.
It is inexplicably unrelated to the European languages.
It is one of Spain’s five (5) officially recognized languages.
the Franco government its use was banned. However, from the 1950s
it underwent a revival, partly because of the creation of ikastolas,
Basque language schools.
the autonomous government of the Basque Country, teaching it in
has been a priority.
the indigenous Mexican language spoken by the Aztecs with the same
status as Spanish.
spoken by about a million people in the central plateau of Mexico and
other areas of Central America.
These are náhuatl words:
- ‘tomatl’ (el tomate: tomato)
- ‘aguacatl’ (el aguacate: avocado)
- ‘chilli’ (el chile: chilli pepper)
- ‘xocoatl’ (el chocolate: chocolate)
- ‘coyotl’ (el coyote: coyote).
very first book published in 1539 was a
catechism in Náhuatl by a Franciscan
the Andean language of the Incas.
is still widely-spoken by the indigenous
the northern parts of Chile,
Argentina and in the southern parts of Colombia and Ecuador.
also a national language Peru
and Bolivia along
In all, there are nearly 13 million speakers.
Its first grammar was compiled by a Catholic missionary in 1560: it was used by
the Church in the conversion of the indigenous population.
It gave Spanish the words like:
- el puma (puma)
- la pampa (prairie)
- el mate (maté tea)
- el caucho (rubber)
- el cóndor (condor)
- la cocaína (cocaine)
is a city in Bolivia where silver was discovered in 1545 by
exported to Spain in such
quantities of silver that the name
of the city became synonymous with wealth.
It gave rise to the expression: valer/costar un potosí (to be worth a fortune.)
Estos (these) muebles (furniture) valen (valer: to be worth) un potosí.
La Federación de Cafeteros(coffee growers) de Colombia
They represent the interests of over half a million
coffee-growing families "en la
dos (2) apellidos.
The first is the father's first surname.
The second is the mother's first surname.
Juan García López who
is married to
Carmen Pérez Rodríguez: García (father's surname) Pérez (mother's surname).
Note: women who marry in Latin America keep their own name.
In Latin America and Spain, families eat their Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve,
"la Nochebuena", after Midnight Mass, "la Misa del Gallo", (gallo: rooster).
This is "la cena de Nochebuena" is the Christmas dinner.
Las doce (12) Campanadas
New Year's Eve, just before midnight in Madrid, Spain, people
gather in the
of La Puerta del Sol to hear the
twelve (12) "campanadas"
chimes of the
a grape (una uva) for
The event is broadcast nationally.
custom is known as
taking the grapes of luck (tomar
de la suerte):
12 grapes [las
doce (12) uvas].
Tuesday) de Carnaval
Cádiz and Tenerife - in Spain - are known for their carnivals.
El Día de la Raza (the day of the race)
America on October 12th
arrival in the Americas.
In Spain, it's called El Día de la Hispanidad (the day of the Hispanic world).
martes y trece (Tuesday 13th)
It is the equivalent of “Friday the 13th” for Spanish-speakers .
Here’s a martes y trece rhyme:
no te cases ni te embarques."
La Fiesta del Quinceañero
The day when
Latin American girls (latinas)
become fifteen (15) years old,
is known as "el quinceañero".
It's a latino tradition tocelebrate the day with a coming-out ball, "la Fiesta
del Quinceanero", with musicians, "mariachis"
who play serenades,
from Araucanian "araucano"
it means "Land's End".
"Araucano" is spoken by over 300,000 people in Chile and Argentina.
from Madrid, Spain, are called "madrileños";
festive day is
"San Isidro"; their dance is "el chotis".
(there were) unas (several) gachís (birds meaning women) bailando
(bailar: to dance) un chotis.
It is a hat that provides shade, "sombra".
This national dish of Peru is a seafood salad.
seafood used in it is marinated in lemon (or lime juice)
hours: other traditional ingredients are chilli and chopped onions.
There are many variations of the recipe across Peru.
Its dried leaves comes from the yerba mate tree.
This tea has a high caffeine content.
as a social drink traditionally served in a
small, hollowed out gourd,
also called "a mate" and drunk through a cylindrical metal tube, "una bombilla".
The word, "mate", comes from the indigenous language, Quechua.
A common Argentinian exclamation: ¡Tomá mate! (Well, what d’you know?)
a refreshing "cold" drink originated
in Segovia, Spain:
it's made using wine
and fruit juice.
The word means smart: it comes from the Spanish verb, to know, ("saber").
"Hacer San Lunes"
This Latin American expression means "to not go to work on Monday".
hacer puente (to make a bridge)
Latin America and Spain, when a public holiday falls on a Tuesday or
Thursday, employers often make the Monday or Friday a holiday as well
in order to give everyone a long weekend: this is known as "hacer puente".
It is derived from ‘sexta hora’ (Latin: the sixth hour) meaning "noon".
The expression, "echarse una siesta", means "to take a nap".
"La quinta columna" (the fifth colum)
expression from the U.S. Gov't was used to refer to the belief that
there were communist infiltrators and communist sympathizers,
of democracy, who had to be rooted out.
The Plaza de Mayo (The May Square)
It is located downtown in front of the presidential palace in Buenos Aires,
1810 independence of
Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay,
and Bolivia from Spain began.
It is now famous for the silent Sunday demonstration of "las madres y las
abuelas (the mothers and grandmothers) de la Plaza de Mayo" of "los
were taken away to be murdered by the
military regime in the late 1970s for being suspected communists.
Cien Años de Soledad (A Hundred Years of Solitude)
It's the title of the famous novel written by Coumbian author, García Márquez,
in 1967: it's the multi-generational story of the Buendía family.
In Spain: ¡Jésus, Salud, y pesetas!
barra de pan" (a French loaf) is used to make un
bocadillo (a sandwich
made with French bread).
They refer to a range of snacks in Spanish bars:
- chorizos (spicy sausages)
- sobrasada (a spreadable sausage)
- salchichón (spiced salami sausage)
Serrano (ham hanging from the ceilings of Spanish bars to cure)
expression originates from drinks served
with lids (tapas): in
was placed on top of the lids (tapas),
came to mean the
food that was on the lids.
countries use a system of "forks"
rather than stars in order to
Enjoy your food.
In Spain "un latigazo" refers to "a shot" of an alcoholic drink.
It can also mean a whipping or a sharp pain.
A látigo is a
La Corrida (bullring)
It's the place where the bull fights happen: until very recently, it was
very much part of the Spanish identity.
It is the exotic, colourful Guatemalan national bird featured prominently
on the Guatemalan flag: it is also the name for the Guatemalan currency.
of the most renowned Aztec gods of Mexico
a plumed serpent.
Its name means ‘tail feather of the quetzal’.
Inti Raymi (the Inca sun god)
It's the annual festival of the winter solstice, held in Cuzco on June 24th.
In the Inca calendar, it marks the beginning of the sun’s new year.
"the mambo" to "the rumba" to "the chachachá" to "the salsa": this
Latino dance music has an Afro-Caribbean rhythm.
of Café (coffee)
- un café solo (black)
- un café tinto (Columbia)
- un café con leche (with milk)
- un café cerrero (strong) (Columbia)
- un cortado (a small coffee with some milk)
Not THE SAME
comprensivo/a "sympathetic and understanding".
like French, possessive adjectives
are NOT used when
Note: colours are masculine+invariable.
hambre is a
has a the masculine definite
When “e” replaces “y” to express "and".
When a word begins with “i” and “hi”, “e” is used.
- padre (father) e hijo (son)
- acero (steel) e hierro (iron).
- Pablo (Paul) e (and) Inés (Agnes)
-ería is a noun suffix
la pastelería (pastel + -ería = pastelería) (pastry shop)
la papelería (papel + -ería = papelería) (stationery store)
la carnicería (carne + -ería = carnicería) (butcher’s shop)
una librería (libro + -ería = librería) de ocasión (second-hand)
-ura is a noun suffix
loco: mad; locura: madness
fresco: fresh; frescura: freshness
hermoso: beautiful; hermosura: beauty
guapo: handsome; guapura: handsomeness
-cito is a diminutive noun suffix
is the diminutive of the Spanish word "mosca" (fly): it literally
means "little fly".
- un poquito (a little bit)
- un trocito (a little slice)
- una casita (a little house)
- un perrito (a little dog/puppy)