The Local List

Ten brilliantly useful words English ‘stole’ from Spanish

Ten brilliantly useful words English 'stole' from Spanish
There would be no macho men if it wasn't for Spanish. Photo: Ryan Gesner
Ever wondered where the words 'mosquito' or 'cannibal' came from? That's right: they're Spanish. The Local looks at ten fantastic words the English language 'borrowed' from Spanish — and won't be giving back.

There's no doubt about it: English has giant vocabulary, and it's partly because English speakers are more than happy to 'steal' words from other languages.

In fact, the English language has an amazing number of 'borrowings' from languages as diverse as Afrikaans (think aardvark) and Tamil (candy).

And after centuries of cross-cultural exchanges English has also nabbed many wonderful words from Spanish.

From cannibal to chocolate, these so-called loan words have become an essential part of our daily speech. 

Click here to check out The Local List of the Ten great words English stole from Spanish.

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