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Ten Catalan expressions you need to know

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Steve Tallantyre - [email protected]
Ten Catalan expressions you need to know
Are you baffled by the bar-room chit-chat every time you head off the tourist trail in Catalonia? Photo: Josep Lago/AFP

In this week's The Local List we look at Catalonia's most colourful colloquialisms to stop you getting lost in translation next time you roam beyond the Ramblas in Barcelona.

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Are you baffled by the bar-room chit-chat every time you head off the tourist trail in Catalonia?
 
Don't worry, your Spanish is (probably) fine. What you're hearing is Catalan, the co-official language spoken by around ten million people in this part of the world.
 
 
While it's perfectly possible to navigate the souvenir shops armed only with a Spanish phrasebook, and to chat to bilingual barcelonins exclusively in castellano, your visit to Catalonia will be deeply enriched by knowing a few phrases in the local lingo.  
 
Despite a common misconception that Catalan is a dialect of Spanish, it is actually a separate Romance language more closely related to French and Italian. It's spoken by more people than Danish, Norwegian or Finnish and has a history dating back to the Middle Ages.
 

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