List of Spanish words of various origins
This is a list of Spanish words of various origins. It includes words from Australian Aboriginal languages, Balti, Berber, Caló, Czech, Dravidian languages, Egyptian, Hungarian, Ligurian, Mongolian, Slavic (such as Old Church Slavonic, Polish, Russian, and Croatian). Some of these words existed in Latin as loanwords from other languages. Some of these words have alternate etymologies and may also appear on a list of Spanish words from a different language.
- canguro= kangaroo: from English kanguru, kangaroo, first recorded by Captain James Cook in 1770, from the Guugu Yimidhirr word gangurru.
- polo= polo: from English polo (1872), from Balti polo, "ball," from the same family as Tibetan bo-lo "ball."
- merino= type of sheep of North African origin bred in Spain: from Berber Merīn (Modern Spanish Benimerines) the people of North Africa who originallt bred this type of sheep.
- moreno = brown, brunette, dark-skinned person: from moro, "a Moor," from Latin Maurus, from Ancient Greek Maúros, probably of Berber origin, but possibly related to the Arabic maghrib "west," which is possibly from the Semitic root '*gh-r-b'
- moro = a Moor: see moreno above
- calé= a gypsy: from Caló "Gypsy, speaker of Romany," see caló below
- caló = Caló, also black, dark-colored: the word is possibly related to Sanskrit kanlanka "blemish, macula" and/or Ancient Greek kelainós "black."
- cañi= Caló, gypsy: possibly from cali, feminine of calé and/or caló, see calé and caló above
- abalorio = glass bead: from Arabic al-ballūri (البلوري) "of the crystal," from al "the," + ballūr "crystal, beryllium," from Ancient Greek beryllos (βήρυλλος) (l and r switched places through metathesis: ballūr from beryllos), from brullion, from Prakrit veruliya (भेरुलिय), from Pāli veuriya (भेउरिय); possibly from or simply akin to a Dravidian source represented by Tamil veiruor, viar (வெஇருஒர்; விஅர்), "to whiten, become pale."
- brillante = brilliant, diamond: from brillar "to shine," see brillar below
- brillar = to shine: possibly from Latin beryllus, "beryllium," from Ancient Greek beryllos (βήρυλλος), see abalorio above
- mango= mango: from English mango, from Portuguese manga, from Tamil mānkāy (மன்கய்) "mango fruit," from mān "mango tree" + kāy "fruit."
- mangosta = mongoose: from French mangouste, from Portuguese mangús, from Marathi mangūs (मंगूस) "mongoose," of Dravidian origin.
- paliacate= handkerchief: shortened from pañuelo de Paliacate, "handkerchief from Paliacte," from Spanish name for Pulicat, a town in the Tiruvallur District, in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The Spanish pañuelo de Paliacate is a partial calque of French mouchoirs de Paliacate (1788).
The Real Academia Española (Spanish Royal Academy) notes that Paliacate comes from the nahualt language. Pal: colour Yacatl: nose.
- paria= pariah, outcast: from Tamil paraiyan "pariah," literally "one who plays the drum," (the pariahs of south India were originally a caste of Untouchables that played drums ), from parai drum, possibly from parāi to speak.
- aciago = unhappy, sad: probably from Latin aegyptius dies, "Egyptian day," from Ancient Greek Aigyptiakos (Αιγυπτιακός) "Egyptian" (adjective), from Aigyptos, see egipcio below.
- barca = boat, launch, barge: from Late Latin barca, from Ancient Greek báris "flat-bottomed boat, launch" of Egyptian origin.
- barco= boat, ship: from barca, see barca above
- copto= a Copt, the Coptic language: from Arabic qubt, qibt, "Copts," from Coptic gyptios, "an Egyptian," from Ancient Greek Aigýptios "Egyptian" (adjective), see egipcio below
- egipcio = an Egyptian, of Egypt: from Latin Aegyptius, from Aígyptus "Egypt," from Ancient Greek Aigyptos, from regional Egyptian Hikuptah, variant of Egyptian Hat-kaptah, one of the ancient names of Memphis, Egypt.
- embarcar = to embark, to board a ship: from Late Latin imbarcare, from in- + barca, see barca above
- gitano= a Gitano, a Gypsy: from Medieval Latin '*Aegyptanus', from Latin Aegyptus, see egipcio above.
- papel = paper: from Catalán paper, from Latin papyrus, "paper, papyrus," see papiro below
- papiro= papyrus: from Latin papyrus, from Ancient Greek pápyros, "papyrus," possibly of Egyptian origin.
- coche = car: originally, a carriage pulled by two horses, ultimately from Hungarian kocsi "carriage, cart," short for kocsi szekér "carriage of Kócs," Hungarian city where carriages with suspension were first made.
- sable = a sabre/saber (see spelling differences): from Old High German sabel, probably derived from Hungarian szablya (1393), literally "tool to cut with," from szabni "to cut."
- caqui = Diospyros plant, and its fruit, the persimmon: from Japanese kaki.
- quimono = kimono: from Japanese kimono literally "thing to be put on," from ki "to put on, wear," + mono "thing, person."
- hoz = sickle: from Latin falx "sickle, scythe," possibly from Ligurian. For the change from f in falx to h in hoz see here.
- mongol = a Mongol: from Mongolian Mongol "a Mongol," documented first in Chinese měng-kǔ, from uncertain source.
- cibelina, cebellina = sable: from Old French zibeline, zibelline, from Italian zibellino, of Slavic origin: compare Russian sobol' and Polish sobol.
- cuarzo = quartz: from German Quarz, from Old High German quarz, from a Western Slavic form '*kwardy', from Slavic '*tvrd: compare Czech tvrdý "quartz, hard," Serbian: тврд / (tvrd) Polish twardy, and Russian tverdy
- vampire = vampire and vamp = a dangerously attractive woman: from Austrian German Vampyre "vampire," which in turn was borrowed from Serbian вампир (vampir), "vampire", "undead".
- calesa = kalesa, a carriage with low wheels and a folding cover: from French calèche, from German Kalesche, from Czech kolesa, "calesa, carriage," from kolesa "wheels," plural of koleso "wheel," from Old Church Slavonic kolo "wheel," IE root '*kwel-'
- polaco = a Polack: from Polish pol- "field, wide and flat territory."
- rutenio = ruthenium: from Medieval Latin Ruthenia "Russia" (the element was discovered in the Urals), from Rutheni, Ruteni "Russians," from Old Russian Rus' "Russia"
- sputnik = satellite: from Russian s = with/from + put = road + -nik = derrivative for objects of people carrying out an action (masc.)
- corbata = necktie, cravat: from Italian carvatta "wool scarf used by Croatian soldiers in the 17th century" with implicit sense "Croatian scarf," from Croatian hrvat "Croat, dof Croatia," of uncertain origin, but from the same root as Old Slavic Chǔrvatinǔ "Croat."
- "Breve diccionario etimológico de la lengua española" by Guido Gómez de Silva (ISBN 968-16-2812-8)
- Harper, Douglas (2001). Online Etymology Dictionary.