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SPANISH WORD OF THE DAY

Spanish Expression of the Day: ¡Anda ya!

Here’s a great Spanish expression for those who don’t believe the hype.

anda ya spanish
¡Anda ya! or ¡Venga ya! are used in Spanish when you don't really believe what you're hearing is true. Photo: Serge Taeymans/Unsplash

Spaniards have many ways of expressing shock and surprise. In fact, we have an article which lists them all in detail, from ¡Madre mía! to ¡No me lo creo!.

 

But how about when you want to clearly express that you don’t believe what you’ve just heard?

 

That’s when Spanish speakers use the expression ¡Anda ya!.

 

It’s similar to when British people say ‘come off it’ or ‘pull the other one’, or Americans use ‘get out of here’ or ‘you cannot be serious’ à la John McEnroe.

 

In its literal sense ¡anda ya! means ‘walk now’, perhaps because it alludes to the fact that the person who is exaggerating or telling a lie should go for a hike. 

 

¡Anda! on its own (without the ya) just suggests slight surprise.

 

At times, ¡anda ya! can also be used to express surprise at unexpected news in a positive sense, without it meaning that you don’t believe what you’ve just heard.

 

But for the most part, this expression is whipped out when you feel someone is telling porky pies (lies). 

 

Other ways of shrugging off comments that don’t seem believable are ¡Venga ya! (used in the same way as ¡anda ya!no te lo crees ni tú (even you don’t believe that), ‘sí, sí, claro’ (whatever), ¿Será broma, no? (You can’t be serious!) or ni de coña (not a chance). 

 

Examples:

 

-En mi juventud, jugué para el Real Madrid junto a Di Stefano.

-¡Anda ya! Si viviste en Francia hasta los 30 años.

 

-In my youth, I played for Real Madrid together with Di Stefano. 

-Come off it! You lived in France until you were 30. 

 

 

-Penélope Cruz se van a presentar a la presidencia de España. 

-¡Anda ya! Eso no te lo crees ni tú!

 

-Penélope Cruz is going to run for the presidency of Spain. 

-Come off it! Even you don’t believe that. 

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SPANISH WORD OF THE DAY

Spanish Word of the Day: ‘Chachi’

Who would’ve thought that there’s a word used all the time in Spain that has something to do with Winston Churchill? Or so the story goes. 

Spanish Word of the Day: 'Chachi'

Chachi is a colloquial way to express approval for something or someone, in the sense of it/them being cool, awesome or great.

It’s mainly a word used by young people in Spain, so saying it to your bank manager or boss may raise an eyebrow or two, but it’s in no way derogatory or rude.

There’s even the expression ¡Chachi piruli Juan Pelotilla! that was popularised by a 90s’ kids show on TV called Telebuten, but it’s now a rather outdated way of saying ‘cool’ in Spanish. 

Chachi is certainly a rather bizarre sounding word and Spain’s Royal Academy actually has it recorded as deriving from chanchi (which nobody uses).

Linguists are not 100 percent certain about the origin of the word but there are two very interesting theories. 

The first is that chachi was first coined in the southern coastal city of Cádiz during World War II, at a time where hunger among locals and contraband at the port were both rife.

Smuggled goods from nearby Gibraltar were considered of the utmost quality as they came from the United Kingdom, and the story goes that Gaditanos (the name for people from Cádiz) referred to these bootlegged products as ‘charchil’, in reference to UK Prime Minister at the time Winston Churchill.

Over time, charchil became chachi, a slang word which (if the story is true) came to mean ‘cool’ across Spain.

Other philologists believe that chachi comes from Caló, the language spoken by Spain’s native gipsy or Roma population. 

Chachipé or chachipen reportedly means ‘truth’ or ‘reality’ in this language spoken by 60,000 people across the Iberian Peninsula.

This could’ve been shortened to chachi and gone from being used like chachi que sí/claro que sí (of course) to chachi to mean ‘cool’.

Whichever theory is true, chachi is a great word to add to your arsenal of Spanish vocab. 

There’s also the Spanish word guay, which has a very similar meaning to chachi; we reviewed it here.

Examples: 

Carlos es un tío chachi. 

Carlos is a cool guy.

¡Pásalo chachi!

Have a great time!

La verdad es que es juego de mesa muy chachi.

The truth is it’s a very cool board game.

¡Qué chachi! Van a hacer un concierto en la plaza.

How cool! They’re going to hold a concert in the square.

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