Resources and exercises

Video about Spanish Idioms

In every Spanish-speaking country people use a lot of idiomatic expressions in daily conversation. Watch this video to learn some of them and get ready to put them into practice.

What are idioms?

Idioms are combinations of words that are commonly used and that have a figurative meaning. By translating each word of the idiom you might not be able to guess the figurative meaning of the expression. Idiomatic expressions in Spanish are varied and come from different Spanish-speaking countries. Their origins are different; in some idioms you can guess the origin is religious, in others it is more related to cultural, historical or geographical aspects, and many idioms are shared by most parts of Hispanic culture.

In some cases you will find idioms that have an equivalent expression in another language. For instance the Spanish expression "Más vale pájaro en mano que cien volando" has the same meaning as the one in English "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush'.

Spanish idioms - a learning video by 121 Spanish

Here are a few explanations of selected Spanish idioms from the video:

  • Dar en el clavo - to guess something or to find the right answer or solution to something.
  • Matar dos pájaros de un tiro - to do or achieve two things at the same time.
  • Estar con la soga al cuello - to be in a difficult or threatening situation, because of imminent danger.
  • Pedirle peras al olmo - to pretend that a person does something that is out of his/her possibilities or capacity.
  • Echar leña al fuego - to make a situation tougher, more intense, or to make people more upset about a situation by making certain comments that are not positive.
  • Faltarle un tornillo a alguien - when a person acts or speaks like a crazy person, or says or does things that are not appropriate or normal.

See also our page about Idiomatic expressions from Spain related to food.

 

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