Basic Spanish vocabulary

Below are:
Alphabet
Numbers
Supermarkets
Parts of the body
Chemists and doctors
Clothing
Colours
Restaurants
Directions

 

 

ALPHABET

Letter, with name, and then pronunciation in brackets. If the pronunciation help has “as in …”, then the letter is pronounced as the letter(s) in bold in that word, e.g. a = the a in lamb. Sometimes however, the letter is pronounced as the word itself, so b = bay (the word, not just the b in bay).

A: a (as in lamb)
B: be (bay)
C: ce (say)
CH: che (chay)
D: de (as in dare)
E: e (as in day)
F: efe (effay)
G: ge (hay)
H: hache (ah chay)
I: i (as in feet)
J: jota (ho ta)
K: ka (as in car)
L: ele (ellay)
LL: elle (eh yay)
M: eme (emmay)
N: ene (ennay)
Ñ: eñe (enyay)
O: o (as in cost)
P: pe (as in pest)
Q: cu (koo)
R: ere (erray)
S: ese (essay)
T: te (tay)
U: u (as in boot)
V: ve (beh)
W: uve doble (ooh beh dob lay)
X: equis (eh kees)
Y: i griega (ee gree eyga)
Z: zeta (sey tah)

NUMBERS

0: cero
1: uno
2: dos
3: tres
4: cuatro
5: cinco
6: seis
7: siete
8: ocho
9: nueve(noo ev eh)
10: diez
11: once(on-say)
12: doce(dos-say)
13: trece(treh-say)
14: catorce(ca-tor-say)
15: quince(keen-say)
16: dieciséis(dee-es-see-saze)
17: diecisiete(dee-es-see-see-et-ay)
18: dieciocho(dee-es-see-och-o)
19: diecinueve(dee-es-see-noo-ev-eh)
20: veinte(bain-te)
21: veintiuno
22: veintidós
23: veintitrés
24: veinticuatro
25: veinticinco
26: veintiséis
27: veintisiete
28: veintiocho
29: veintinueve
30: treinta(train-te)
31: treinta y uno
32: treinta y dos
33: treinta y tres
34: treinta y cuatro
35: treinta y cinco
36: treinta y seis
37: treinta y siete
38: treinta y ocho
39: treinta y nueve
40: cuarenta(kwar-en-ta)
41: cuarenta y uno
42: cuarenta y dos
43: cuarenta y tres
44: cuarenta y cuatro
45: cuarenta y cinco
46: cuarenta y seis
47: cuarenta y siete
48: cuarenta y ocho
49: cuarenta y nueve
50: cincuenta(sin-cwen-ta)
51: cincuenta y uno
52: cincuenta y dos
53: cincuenta y tres
54: cincuenta y cuatro
55: cincuenta y cinco
56: cincuenta y seis
57: cincuenta y siete
58: cincuenta y ocho
59: cincuenta y nueve
60: sesenta
61: sesenta y uno
62: sesenta y dos
63: sesenta y tres
64: sesenta y cuatro
65: sesenta y cinco
66: sesenta y seis
67: sesenta y siete
68: sesenta y ocho
69: sesenta y nueve
70: setenta
71: setenta y uno
72: setenta y dos
73: setenta y tres
74: setenta y cuatro
75: setenta y cinco
76: setenta y seis
77: setenta y siete
78: setenta y ocho
79: setenta y nueve
80: ochenta
81: ochenta y uno
82: ochenta y dos
83: ochenta y tres
84: ochenta y cuatro
85: ochenta y cinco
86: ochenta y seis
87: ochenta y siete
88: ochenta y ocho
89: ochenta y nueve
90: noventa
91: noventa y uno
92: noventa y dos
93: noventa y tres
94: noventa y cuatro
95: noventa y cinco
96: noventa y seis
97: noventa y siete
98: noventa y ocho
99: noventa y nueve
100: cien(see-en)
101: ciento uno/una/un
102: ciento dos, etc
200: doscientos
205: doscientos/as cinco
300: trescientos/as
400: cuatrocientos/as
500: quinientos/as
600: seiscientos/as
700: setecientos/as (note spelling siete, but setecientos)
800: ochocientos/as
900: novecientos/as (note spelling nueve, but novecientos)
1000: mil
1001: mil uno, etc
2000: dos mil
5000: cinco mil
10,000: diez mil
500,000: quinientos/as mil
1,000,000: un millón
100,000,000: cien millones
1,000,000,000: mil millones
1,000,000,000,000: un billón

SUPERMARKETS
Standard foodstuffs and other staples.

apple : manzana
apricot : albaricoque
avocado : aguacate
baked Beans : Frijoles or Judias en salsa de tomate
banana : platano
basil : albahaca
bass : lubina
beef : ternera (or vaca) … in Spain, usually beef, though possibly veal.
beer : cerveza
blackberry : mora
blackcurrant : grosella
black pepper : pimienta negra
bleach : lejia
bread : pan
bream : dorada
butter: mantequilla
cabbage : repollo or col
carrots : zanahorias
cauliflower : coliflor
cayenne pepper : cayena
cheese : queso
cherries : cerezas
chicken : pollo (breast : pechuga)
chives : cebollinos or cebolletas
cider : sidra
cinnamon : canela
cod : bacalao
coriander : cilantro
corn : maiz
cornflour : maizena
cream : nata
cumin : comino
custard : crema (if hot and pouring) or natillas (if cold and creamy set)
dill : eneldo
duck : pato
eggs : huevos
fabric conditioner : suavizante
fillet steak : solomillo (normally fillet, but can also be sirloin, which is usually entrecot)
flour : harina
french beans : judias verdes
fruit : fruta
garlic : ajo
ginger : jengibre
grapefruit : pomelo
grapes : uvas
hake : merluza
ham : jamon
herbs : hierbas
jam & marmalade : mermelada
juice : zumo (or jugo)
lamb : cordero
milk : leche (semi skimmed: semidesnatada)
mushrooms : champiñónes or setas
nougat : turron
olive oil : aceite de oliva
olives : aceitunas
oil : aceite
onion : cebolla
orange : naranja
paprika : pimenton
parsley : perejil
peach : melocoton
peanuts : cacahuetes
peas : guisantes
pineapple : piña
pork : cerdo (chops : chuletas; loin (or back) : lomo; ribs : costillas)
potatoes : papas or patatas (papas arrugadas : Canarian potatoes)
red/green pepper : pimiento rojo/verde
rosemary : romero
sausage : salchicha
spices : especias
spicy sausage : chorizo
soap : jabon
sole : lenguado
soup : sopa
spaghetti : espaguetis
spices : especias
strawberries : fresas
sunflower oil : aceite girasol
sweet potato : batata
toilet paper : papel higienico
trout : trucha
tuna : atun
turkey : pavo
turmeric : curcuma
vegetable oil : aceite vegetal
vetables : verduras
walnuts : nueces (sg nuez)
washing powder : detergente (“ropa claro” for light clothes; “color” for colours)
washing-up liquid : lavavajillas.
wine : vino (white : blanco; red : tinto)

PARTS OF THE BODY

abdomen : vientre
ankle : tobillo
arm : brazo
back : espalda
blood : sangre
body : cuerpo
bone : hueso
brain : cerebro
breasts : pechos
cheek : mejilla
chest : pecho
chin : barbilla
ear : oreja
elbow : codo
eye : ojo
face : cara
foot : pie (feet : pies) (pronounced pee-eh/pee-es)
forehead : frente
finger : dedo
hair : pelo
hand : mano
head : cabeza
heart : corazon
hip : cadera
jaw : mandibula
kidney : riñon
knee : rodilla
leg : pierna
liver : higado
lung : pulmon
mouth : boca
muscle : musculo
neck : cuello
nose : nariz
shoulder : hombro
skin : piel (pee-el)
stomach : estómago
thigh : muslo
throat : garganta
thumb : pulgar
tongue : lengua
tooth : diente
wrist : muñeca

CHEMISTS AND DOCTORS

allergic : alérgico/a
anaesthetic : anestésico
antibiotics : antibióticos
antiseptic : antiséptico
appointment : cita
aspirin : aspirina
asthma : asma
bandage : vendaje
blood : sangre
blood group : grupo sanguíneo
blood pressure : tension (alta-high or baja-low)
blood test : análisis de sangre
bronchitis : bronquitis
cancer : cáncer
capsules : cápsulas
chemist : farmacia
cold : resfriado
condoms : preservativos
constipation : estreñimiento
contact lenses : lentillas
cough : tos
dental floss : seda dental
diabetic : diabético/a
diarrhoea : diarrea
doctor : medico
drops : gotas
epilepsy : epilepsia
epileptic fit : ataque epiléptico
fever : fiebre
first aid box : botiquín
flu : gripe
fracture : fractura
gall stone : cálculo biliar
headache : dolor de cabeza
heart attack : infarto
inflammation : inflamación
itch : picor
medicine : medicina
migraine : migraña
moisturizer : crema hidratante
ointment : pomada
operation : cirugía
pain : dolor (general – difundido; burning – ardiente; shooting – punzante)
pain killers : analgésicos
penicillin : penicilina
plasters : tiritas
pregnant : embarazada
prescription : receta
rash : sarpullido
sanitary towels : compresas
sick : feel – estar mareado(a); be – vomitar
sore throat : dolor de garganta
stroke : derrame cerebral
sunburn : quemadura de sol
swelling : hinchazón
syrup : jarabe (cough syrup : jarabe para tos)
tablets : pastillas/comprimidos
tampons : tampones
temperature : fiebre
the Pill : píldora
toothpaste : pasta de dientes
tranquilizers : calmantes
vaccination : vacuna
wound : herida
x ray : rayo x

CLOTHING

belt : cinturón
big/loose : ancho
blouse : blusa
boots : botas
bra : sujetador
button : botón
cap : gorra
coat : abrigo
clothing : ropa
collar : cuello
comfortable : cómodo
cotton : algodon
dress : vestido
fabric : tela
fit well : entallar
footwear : calzado
garment : prenda
gloves : guantes
handbag : bolso
hat : sombrero
jacket : chaqueta
jeans : vaqueros
jewellery : joyas
jumper : jersey
knickers : bragas
leather : cuero
lining : forro
long : largo
nightdress : camisón
pocket : bolsillo
purse : monedero
raincoat : impermeable
sandals : sandalias
scarf : bufanda
shirt : camisa
shoes : zapatos
short : corto
silk : seda
size : talla
skirt : falda
sleeves : mangas
slippers : zapatillas
socks : calcetines
sun glasses : gafas del sol
stockings : medias
strap : correa
suit : traje
swimming costume/trunks : bañador
tie/cravat : corbata
tight : apretado
T-shirt : camiseta
trousers : pantalones
underwear : ropa interior
undo : desabrochar
velvet : terciopelo
wool : lana
zip : cremallera

COLOURS

apricot : albaricoque
black : negro
blue : azul
brown : marron/pardo
gold : dorado
green : verde
grey : gris
orange : naranja
pink : rosado
purple : morado
red : rojo
silver : plateado
turquoise : turquesa
violet : violeta
white : blanco
yellow : amarillo

RESTAURANTS

appetizer : aperitivo
bill : cuenta
breakfast : desayuno
chair : silla
“Cheers!” : Salud!
dessert : postre
dinner : cena
fork : tenedor
glass : vaso (wine glass : copa)
homemade : casero
ice : hielo
knife: cuchillo
knife and fork (place setting) : cubiertos
lunch : almuerzo
menu : menú
napkin : servilleta
plate : plato
reservation : reserva
salad : ensalada
salt : sal
sauce : salsa
saucer : platillo
set menu : menú del día
spoon : cuchara
table : mesa
teaspoon : cucharita
tip : propina
waiter/ress : camarero/a

DIRECTIONS

Turn right : Gire a la derecha
Turn left : Gire a la izquierda
Straight ahead : Siga recto
that way : por alli
this way: por aquí
on the way back : de vuelta
Where is … : Donde está …
near : cerca
far away : lejos
exit (or junction on motorway) : salida
How do I get to … : cómo se puede llegar a …
centre (of town) : casco
address : dirección
stop there : alto ahí
Take me to … : Lléveme a …
What is the fare? : Cuánto es la tarifa?

 

8 Comments

  1. Thank you very much for taking the time to do this! It is always nice to know a few words of the local language. I am Norwegian, and trying to learn enough Spanish to make myself understood as a regular tourist. I think it is polite to do so, too!
    My husband and I have plans to stay on Tenerife for two or three months in the wintertime, starting in a couple of years. My body refuses to co-operate in the cold weather here, and Tenerife is our favourite island!
    Thanks again! :o)

  2. Very useful Janet…..saves me diving for my dict….

    Please will you add knife – I can never remember this!

    Thank you

  3. Author

    I can’t imagine how I left it out!! I’ve added it now … cuchillo!

  4. Hi Janet.
    Being retired now I would very much like to learn spanish.
    I would like to learn the language at a school in the Las Americas area if possible.
    Accomadation would not be a problem for me, better still staying with a spanish host family would be great.
    Hope you can help.
    Regards Mick.

  5. Author

    Hi Mick, well almost all the councils offer language classes, though not often in an intensive school-type environment. More intensive is the Adeje summer school, but that’s seasonal and won’t be running yet for a few months. Another alternative is a private tutor, and there are many here who offer that service. I can suggest some names if that’s an attractive option for you.
    .
    Better than anything, however, might be to take some backghround classes in the UK and then come over and immerse yourself in a Spanish environment, topped up with private tuition, Spanish television … and above all, living in an area where you need Spanish rather than being able to fall back on English. In that respect, I’m afraid that Playa de las Américas is one of the worst areas for you, because almost everyone speaks English, and learners are nearly always answered in English for speed and ease even when it’s obvious they’re trying to learn Spanish. I would recommend a north Tenerife town, personally, for a real Spanish experience where English is less readily used.

  6. Does “the Living Room” in las Americas still do basic Spanish lessons.
    Its over 3 years since I was last there.
    Above Burger King.
    great views and a cheap cuppa too. 🙂

  7. Author

    I’m afraid I have no idea.

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