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Estar en el quinto pino

Estar en el Quinto Pino - Origin and Meaning

Estar en el Quinto Pino

MEANING

“Estar en el quinto pino” is a colloquial expression that indicates that something is far away from where we are, as Real Academia Española states.

The literally translation in English would be something like ‘to be at the fifth tree’ and would be equivalent to be in the middle of nowhere, far or miles away, out in the sticks or in the boonies/boondocks.

EXAMPLES
  • No voy andando. La casa está en el quinto pino. → I am not walking. The house is in the middle of nowhere.
  • Cogeremos el autobús. El colegio está en el quinto pino. → We are taking the bus. The school is in the boonies.

ORIGIN

It seems that the expression originated in the capital of Spain (Madrid).

They say that during Felipe’s V reign they planted five big pine on the path that goes from El Paseo del Prado until where today we find the Nuevos Ministerios.

These five pine trees were separated from each other by a big distance and the fifth pine tree was placed at the end of the path.

People from that time used those pine trees as a meeting points.

The typical was to meet at the first pine trees, since they were located close to the city center. However, the fifth pine tree, which was the furthest one away from the city, was used for couples as a meeting place. Thus, they could show their love to each other without the people’s curiosity.

It seems that was the ideal place for them to meet, but maybe it had the inconvenience of being too far away from the center or in other words, ‘estar en el quinto pino’.

Final Thoughts

Now, I would like to hear from you. Had you ever heard this expression before? When do you consider something ‘está en el quinto pino’?

Please leave your answers in the comment section below.

Before you leave, are you interested in Spain and its language? Then, you may find our online Spanish classes helpful. With these classes, you will practice your speaking and listening skills with a native speaker from Spain.


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