5 Spanish Words We Don’t Have in English

5-Great-Untranslateable-Spanish-Words

5 Spanish Words We Don’t Have In English — But Should

One of the coolest things about learning another language is finding individual words that express ideas that take a whole mouthful of words in your own language. A great example is schadenfreude—the feeling of happiness or satisfaction at another person’s misfortune. So, what are some Spanish words that express ideas we don’t have a single word for in English?

Empalagarse
When something is way too sweet and kind of grosses you out.
Seriously, why don’t we have a word for this in English? I know I feel this way all the time (especially when eating the sweets I used to love as a child).

La galleta estaba tan dulce que me empalagué.  –  The cookie was so sweet that it grossed me out.
Mi papá pone tanta azucar en mi café que me empalaga.  –  My dad puts so much sugar in my coffee that it grosses me out.

Te quiero
When you kind of feel like you love someone, but a step below really loving them. Can be used with friends or in a relationship that hasn’t developed to the point of deep love yet.

Sobremesa
The time spent sitting around the table and sharing conversation after you’ve finished a meal. What a beautiful concept!

Mi mamá sirve café en la sobremesa. –  My mom serves coffee while we sit and chat after eating.
Acabamos de comer, ahora estamos en la sobremesa.  –  We finished eating, now we’re chatting after our meal.

Aturdir
When you are so overwhelmed by something(s) that you start making careless mistakes. For example, when several people are trying to talk to you at once, or when the kids won’t stop yelling in the backseat and you run a stop sign.

Me aturde cuando tocan constantemente el claxon.  –  I get overwhelmed & distracted when people constantly beep the horn.
Los ladridos del perro del vecino me aturde.  –  The barking of the neighbor’s dog overwhelms & distracts me.

Pena ajena
When you’re embarrassed on somebody else’s behalf. Like when a drunk friend is making a fool of themselves in public, or your younger brother is painfully awkward around his crush.

Me da pena ajena verla tan borracha.  –  Seeing her so drunk makes me embarrassed for her.
El dio un presentación tan mal que me dio pena ajena.  –  He gave such a bad presentation that I was embarrassed for him.

Do you know an untranslatable Spanish word?

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