8 idiomatic expressions to feel Spanish

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I hope you have revised you British idioms… Today we move on to the next lesson. This one focuses on the expressions of one of the most spoken languages in the world: Spanish. To learn Spanish, like many other languages, it is really important to be familiar with idioms, or idiomatic expressions. Indeed, not understanding one of them during a conversation can quickly become awkward… You know why? Well, read the article to find out…

Estar como una cabra

Let’s start with the expression “estar como una cabra”.

The expression is literally translated as “to be like a goat”. I agree it does not help you to guess the meaning…

In fact, if a Spaniard tells you that he is “como una cabra”, it means that he is furious…! In English, there are different expressions to express ire, such as “to be completely mad”, or “to be off your head”.

Despedirse a la francesa 

This expression literally means “to say goodbye in the French manner”. But what did the French do?

“Despedirse a la francesa” is actually used to describe when a person leaves a place without saying goodbye, who does it (very) discreetly.

Ser pan comido

“To be eaten bread”? What does that mean?

Although this is a literal translation, it gives you a hint about the equivalent in English. Another little hint: the equivalent also makes reference to food.

Have you guessed?

In Spanish, “ser pan comido” means that something is very simple. In English, we would say “to be a piece of cake”.

Ser un melón

Literally, “ser un melón” means “to be a melon”. I agree, there are many Spanish expressions that refer to food.

In fact, this expression is not very meliorative since it implies that a person is… a “blockhead”.

Ser una rata 

I just want to give you some advice: if someone tells you that you are “una rata”, you should actually take it badly.

No, “ser una rata” does not imply that you’re a rat. However, it does mean that you are… miserly.

Buscar tres pies al gato 

“Buscar tres pies al gato” literally means “to look for three feet on a cat”.

But in fact, when a Spanish person uses such an expression, he is reproaching someone for complicating things, or “splitting hairs”.

Dar la vuelta a la tortilla 

“To turn the omelette around”? What does that mean?

In fact, “dar la vuelta a la tortilla” is a Spanish idiomatic expression that means turning the situation around, or “switching roles”.

Estar hasta las narices

Word by word, “estar hasta las narices” means “to be up the nostrils”.

The idiom actually describes when a person is fed up about something, or a situation. The equivalent in English would be “to be sick and tired”.

Well, from now on, with these 8 idiomatic expressions to feel Spanish, mastering the language will be “pan comido”…!

Leana