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My favourite words

Posted on: 20/08/2008

More than once I have found myself laughing or smiling, amused or fascinated by a word. So I have decided I’ll start listing them. Most of them I won’t remember right away. But I’m sure they’ll come up little by little. Here are a couple:
  • Ratunku: it works as a cry for help in Polish. It means “socorro” in Spanish and “help” in English. I learned this one when I was talking with some Spanish and Latin American co-workers about our impressions on Polish Language. Just imaging yourself shouting it in the middle of a fire: ratunku! ratunku!
  • Jututuba: another funny word. This one is Estonian. It means “chat room” in English or just “chat” in Spanish. I learned this one talking with friends in Skype on an chat of Internationals in Tallinn. So in our next business online meeting, we could meet up at the Sales and Marketing Jututuba in Skype 😉
  • Serendipity: this one is just curious. I saw it for the first time about 5 years ago while watching Donnie Darko with my sister. Since then I’ve read it only twice and never heard it. According to thefreedictionary.com it means “The faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident”. Even though I cannot find it in rae.es I found “Serendipia” in Wikipedia as the Spanish equivalent. It says on the same website that the word derives from Serendip, the old Persian name for Sri Lanka.
  • Butterfly: a favourite since I started studying English. I tend to think of it separately: Butter&Fly. What does flying butter has to do with this beautiful insect? Or better just butter itself and a disgusting fly? This is what thefreedictionary.com says: “Is a butterfly named for the color of its excrement or because it was thought to steal butter? It is hard to imagine that anyone ever noticed the color of butterfly excrement or believed the insect capable of such theft. The first suggestion rests on the fact that an early Dutch name for the butterfly was boterschijte. The second is based on an old belief that the butterfly was really a larcenous witch in disguise”.
  • Mariposa: this is the Spanish word for butterfly. I like thinking of it separately as well: Mari&Posa it means Mari poses (Mari is the short for María). I find this flattering 🙂

5 comentarios to "My favourite words"

Nıce entry! And funny explanation for serendipity.Although I have different favorite words in each language, Butterfly gets the honour of The cutest word in every language (I speak). The french Papillon is super sweet/catchy, and even in ultra-straightforward-and-dry-German it sounds good: Schmetterling. Wikipedia just explained me that the origin of the word comes also from the belief of flying witches, and is based on an old word for cream…don’t know about that but still like it.And by the way, where’s Chat-EWWW? 🙂

great post! …but now I can’t resist the urge to think of what my favourite words would be :P”rozbrykany” – have you heard it before? I cannot really give a proper translation but it’s like hyper-active and being everywhere at once – but usually in reference to small kids only”rozprzestrzeniac sie” – “to spread (itself)”, no idea how that would be in Spanish 😛 But as you pronounce it, it “shushes” like the wind, I like that:) “Suspicious sushes spreading sushing shyly””jajajajajajajaja” – that would be my Spanish bet, I love the way you people laugh, it sounds like fast robot-like nodding in German 😛

Hahahaha “fast robot-like nodding in German”.Sooooooo good interpretation!!!Jajajajajaja 😛

[…] aprovechar de traducir este post que escribí hace mucho tiempo sobre palabras que me gustan. El original es en inglés, pero aquí les van en la lengua de “el día E”, como debe […]

[…] la tercera o cuarta vez que escribo sobre las palabras que me gustan (y que no). La primera vez lo hice en inglés, y la segunda y tercera en español, editando y reeditando un mismo […]


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