Spanish sayings

Spanish sayings, idioms and fixed expressions

Spanish sayings, idioms and fixed expressions

This post will show you a few common Spanish sayings, idioms, and fixed expressions with their equivalents in English.

First of all, let’s define some concepts. According to R. A. E  “dicho o refrán” is: “Dicho agudo y sentencioso de uso común”. Saying or proverb would be their equivalents in English. On the other hand, “modismo o expresión idiomática” is: “Expresión fija, privativa de una lengua, cuyo significado no se deduce de las palabras que la forman”. Also known as idiom in English. In addition, “frase hecha” would correspond to fixed expressions.

My experience

In my experience, all these sentences are one of the most difficult things to learn when studying a new language. For example, idioms do not follow regular grammar rules. In addition, their meanings cannot be predicted from the meaning of its individual words. If you try to translate an idiom literally, you could say something funny and sometimes inappropriate sentences. One way you can learn them is by using them regularly. By doing so, they will become part of your daily vocabulary.

A useful list

The following list will help you to get familiar with some of the most common Spanish sayings, idioms, and fixed expressions.

Please, feel free to add more in the comments.

Al mal tiempo buena cara
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade
A quien madruga Dios le ayuda
The early bird gets the worm
A toda pastilla
Full throttle
Full speed
Costar un ojo de la cara
It costs an arm and a leg
Dale gas
Step on the gas
Dar por sentado
To take for granted
Dime con quien andas, y te diré quien eres
A man is known by the company he keeps
Echar un cable
Echar una mano

To give a hand
To lend a hand
El mundo es un pañuelo
It is a small world
El saber no ocupa lugar
You can never know too much
El tiempo lo cura todo
Time heals all wounds
Estar al tanto
To be up to date
Estar de mala leche
To be in a bad mood
Estar de muerte
To be out of this world
Estar en el quinto pino
To be far away
Estar en la edad del pavo
To be in the awkward age
Ir pisando huevos
To be walking on eggshells
Liarla parda
To make a complete mess
Más vale malo conocido que bueno por conocer
Better the devil you know than the devil you don't
Más vale prevenir que curar
Better safe than sorry
Meterse en un lío
Meterse en líos
To get into trouble
No hay dos sin tres
Misfortunes always come in threes
Pasar factura
Take its toll on
To catch up with
Ser pan comido
To be a piece of cake
Ser un membrillo
To be gullible
To be silly/stupid
Ser un plasta
To be a pain in the neck
Tener mala leche
To act in bad faith
Ya pueden decir misa
To preach to the choir

Thank you for stopping by.

If you like it, share the knowledge!


Want to hear more? Sign up for our newsletter!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *